BARANGAY Ginebra governor Alfrancis Chua said the PBA aims to open the 2021 season on June 15 after the league was given the clearance to conduct full practices and scrimmages by the Inter-Agency Task Force.
Chua said the opening of the league June would be possible once all PBA teams follow the health and safety protocols that will be implemented during the closed-circuit set-up of practices that will begin this month.
“We are thinking of June 15,” said Chua on The Chasedown when asked about the initial target date of the league to open.
Chua and PBA commissioner Willie Marcial had a meeting with Sen. Bong Go and Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea last week to appeal for the league to start play outside a bubble set-up. The IATF later gave the green light to the PBA to hold practices in GCQ and MGCQ areas with protocols in place.
The June opening will allow the PBA to play the season under a two-conference format, and outside the bubble set-up that was costly to the league financially last year.
Chua noted the importance of holding the practice sessions under a safe environment in order for the league to get the nod of the government to push through with the June 15 opening.
“Bawat teams sa PBA, alam nila kung gaano kahirap kung paano kami nabuksan para maumpisahan ‘yung practice na 5-on-5. Hindi naman namin gusto na ensayo lang. Kung ensayo lang gusto namin, okay lang practice kami ng practice. Siyempre gusto namin makapaglaro. We have to prove to them na nag-eensayo kami, walang nahawa, wala lahat, para mapayagan na tayo.”
Chua said the opening of the season now rests on the shoulders of the entire league, urging all teams to remain vigilant in following minimum health standards and treat the PBA as if it is family in order for the season to push through.
“Hindi IATF o sila Sen. Bong o si Executive Secretary. Nasa sa amin ‘yun. We have to prove to them na kaya namin ‘yung protocols, na maingat na maingat kami para kami makapaglaro. Binigyan ako ng susi. Kung paano namin pagagandahin ‘yung susi, paano namin lalagyan ng bulaklak o pagagandahin ‘yung susi, nasa sa amin na ‘yun,” said Chua.
“Wag sila maging kampante. Dapat lalo kaming maging strict. If we want to stay and play the game, kailangan talaga sundin natin ‘yung tama. Ituring nila ang liga na ‘to na pamilya nila. Ituring nila na tayo nabigyan ng tsansa, wag na natin pakawalan,” he added.
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