THE healing process for the PBA board continues as the league's top officials hold an informal, three-day meeting in Hong Kong starting on Wednesday.
Board chairman Ricky Vargas and Commissioner Willie Marcial will lead the group that will leave Manila on Wednesday and won’t be back until the day before the mid-season Commissioner’s Cup kicks off at the Smart Araneta Coliseum on Sunday.
Vargas said the agenda during the meeting “will be free-wheeling.”
“It’s not going to be a formal board meeting, it’s going to be very informal,” explained Vargas, also the president of the Philippine Olympic Committee (POC). “It’s also a little bit of bonding and unity, parang team building.”
It’s the first time the board will be together since the aborted pre-season planning session held in Los Angeles last November at the height of the contentious issue involving the term of then commissioner Chito Narvasa.
Seven members of the board voted against the retention of Narvasa as head of Asia’s pioneering play-for-pay league, while the remaining five stood behind the embattled former coach and Ateneo player.
Narvasa eventually stepped down and was replaced by Marcial, the former statistician, television staff, and media bureau chief who rose to become officer in charge and later the ‘healing commissioner.’
“We will talk about a lot of things that will prepare us for the next planning session,” said Vargas, who will be succeeded by the board of governor of Alaska as chairman next season. “There will be clarification of roles and clarification of what we want to do.”
Marcial said among the issues likely to be discussed during the meeting is the league’s constitution and by-laws, including a provision for a fixed term for the commissioner.
“Baka isa sa mga ma-take up yun, depende sa usapan kasi wala namang formal agenda,” said Marcial, who was given by the board a three-year term as commissioner.
He said possible revisions in the league’s by-laws have already been delegated to board members Atty. Raymund Zorilla (Phoenix), Atty. Mamerto Mondragon (Rain or Shine), and league counsel Atty. Melvin Mendoza.
Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) president Al Panlilio, who will be attending in his capacity as Meralco board representative, is also going to formalize the federation’s request to call up four to five players for the Philippine team to the FIBA 3x3 World Cup which the country is hosting from June 8-12 at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan.
Terrence Romeo, recently acquired by TnT Katropa, is on top of the wish list.
At the same time, Marcial will inform the board about FIBA’s decision to move the second round of the World Cup qualifier from August to September. The league will take at least a one-week break prior to the home-and-away games to give Gilas Pilipinas ample time to prepare as a team.