THE PBA cracked the whip and punished all those involved in the endgame mess that marred the PBA Philippine Cup clash between defending champion San Miguel Beer and Barangay Ginebra.
Suspensions were slapped on the four referees who worked the game won by the Kings, 100-96, as well as members of the table officials, while San Miguel guard Chris Ross was fined a total of P25,800, including P20,000 for issuing statements 'detrimental to the league' in the aftermath of the controversy.
Referee Jerry Borja bore the brunt of the first suspensions meted under new commissioner Willie Marcial after being banned for three weeks for calling the foul on Ginebra's Sol Mercado against Chico Lanete - and later allowing Ross instead of Lanete to take the free throw.
The three other referees, namely, Noy Guevarra, Jimmy Mariano, and Mardy Montoya, were also punished for failing to spot the error and correct the situation, resulting in the chaos that marred the final 4.5 seconds of the game.
Guevarra, who as free throw administrator handed the ball to Ross during the confusion-marred sequence, crew chief Mariano, and fourth man Montoya were suspended for one week each.
Also suspended for a week were veteran book scorer Lito Mendegoria and barker Noel Zarate, who didn’t inform the referees about the error, which was only corrected after Ross had already taken his first free throw.
The barker also announced Ross' name prior to the SMB guard attempting the free throw.
Apart from the P20,000, an additional P5,800 fine was slapped on Ross for incurring two technical fouls, broken down to P2,400 for the first infraction and P3,400 for the second technical foul.
This was the second time Ross was fined in a weeks' time, He was earlier penalized for P2,600 after figuring in a verbal altercation with Alex Mallari and coach Yeng Guiao in San Miguel's 109-98 win over NLEX.
Also meted a fine worth P5,000 was TnT Katropa's Troy Rosario for incurring a landing spot infraction against Magnolia guard Paul Lee in their game last Saturday.
Lee suffered a sprain on his left ankle and didn't return to the game won by the Hotshots, 91-83.