THE PBA Board will hold a special meeting two weeks from now to specifically tackle matters pertaining to the campaign of Gilas Pilipinas in major international tournaments.
The meeting is set June 5, with the entire board expected to be around including Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) president Al Panlilio, who also happens to represent Meralco in the league board.
Panlilio had sounded the need to revisit the original agreement between the SBP and PBA in light of the new home-and-away format of the Fiba World Cup qualifiers as well as the four-team blockbuster trade that created an imbalance among members of the Gilas pool spread among the 12 PBA ballclubs.
The SBP president sounded the need to iron out the agreement with the PBA and perhaps make changes in Gilas coach Chot Reyes' lpool after the last Seaba Championship following the NLEX-GlobalPort-TNT-Meralco trade that left the Batang Pier with four players in the Gilas pool in Terrence Romeo, Bradwyn Guinto, Jonathan Grey and Von Pessumal.
Panlilio, however, wasn't around during Thursday's regular board meeting at the PBA office as he is currently in Rome, along with PLDT and Smart Communication chairman Manny V. Pangilinan and TnT Katropa alternate board Patrick Gregorio to attend the wedding of Ricky Vargas' daughter.
"Mr. Panlilo was not around, that's why there's a special board meeting on June 5 to discuss the Gilas future," said commissioner Chito Narvasa after the meeting.
"Ang hirap mag-diskusyon kasi wala si Mr. Panlilio, and we will not know his side. So everything was held in abeyance until we meet with him."
Narvasa mentioned that among the matter to be discussed during the meeting is the schedule of the league by the time the national team sees action in the Jones Cup, and later on in both the Southeast Asian Games and the FIBA Asia Cup.
The three international meets fall simultaneously with the season-ending Governors Cup.
“We gave them (Board) already three options. One, kung tuluy-tuloy kami. Second, we will stop for a while, and the third is a shortened PBA schedule,” Narvasa disclosed.
During the recent staging of the Southeast Asia Basketball Association (Seaba) Championship, the league took a week-long break from playing the Commissioner’s Cup.
Narvasa though is not certain how Panlilio – and the SBP for that matter – would go about in discussing the composition of the Gilas training pool that was shaken a bit earlier following the consummation of a series of blockbuster trades.
As per the Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) between the pro league and the country’s governing body for the sport, each of the 12 member ballclub will have to lend a cadet and a regular player to the national team training pool.
But as per the recent trades, Globalport ended up with four players in the Gilas pool after acquiring Bradwyn Guinto and rookie Jonathan Grey along with resident superstar Terrence Romeo and cadet Von Pessumal.
“I don’t think na kami (league) ang makikialam diyan. Kasi meron na ngang pool, so bahala na ang coaching staff diyan, sila Chot (Reyes),” said the league commissioner.
If he has his way though, Narvasa still believes the current training pool will have to be kept if only to maintain whatever cohesion it gained while training and preparing for the Seaba.
“The pool has to be maintained, kasi di ba yun ang gusto mong magsama-sama for a long time,” he stressed.
Then again, it’s all up to the SBP whatever what its next move will be.
“But depende nga. Mahirap nga kasing mag-discuss without Mr. Panlilio around,” Narvasa added.