A WILD, wild Game Two of the Philippine Cup Finals continues to be the talk of the town, but PBA technical consultant Perry Martinez is giving league referees high marks for the way the match was called.
Speaking to Spin.ph after a review of the tape of San Miguel Beer's bruising 100-86 win over Alaska on Friday night, Martinez said the PBA technical team found more lapses from the referees in Game One than in Game Two.
“Yung unang game, medyo 'yun, marami tayong kailangang i-improve dun. In fact the referees there were already summoned and sanctioned,” Martinez, who also acts as a resource person on officiating for the Sports5 television coverage, said on Saturday morning.
“Marami kaming nakita run na (wrong calls that) affected both teams, although I personally think na Alaska really won that game, pero on the part of officiating, I think we could have done better.
“Ako personally, I reviewed Game Two kanina, we were okay yesterday (Game Two), and the officiating went better and mistakes from Game One were corrected properly.”
Not a few fans felt the referees lost control of Game Two, leading to players from both sides losing their tempers and sparking several skirmishes on the floor.
Martinez, however, said the three referees had the game under control, allowing players from both sides to play physical without going beyond what is allowed.
“Medyo magulo lang ang laro kagabi, because that’s how the players wanted the game to be. Kita mo naman naging matapang ang mga referees to call the right calls and issue F1 (flagrant foul 1 calls)kung kailangan,” he said.
Martinez also believed the referees were on top of the situation, keeping the game from going out of control.
“Hindi naman nagkaroon ng lapses at hindi rin nag-relax ang referees,” he said. “You cannot prevent players or teams from playing physical. Hindi mo pwedeng bawalan ang mga yan during the game.
“Ang importante sa game officials kung ano ang foul o sumosobra sa what is allowed by the guidelines, 'yun ang tatawagan. Kung di natawagan 'yun, dun may lapse ang referee.”
Martinez, who incidentally is the city administrator of Laoag City, even cited some instances where the referees called f1 fouls on contact that would simply be regular fouls in non-playoff games, just to keep the game under control.
“In yesterday’s game, may mga flagrant foul penalty one na tinawag. Yung kagabi, may f1 na dapat sa regular games, it could have been a regular foul lang,” he said.
“Pero dahil sa kailangang i-manage ang laro dahil masyado nang pisikal, sumosobra na. Kaya pumito na ng f1. It’s part of the rules in handling games. It’s allowed under officiating guidelines,” he said.
“It’s a championship series, and obviously both teams are passionate to win the game.”
Anticipating that the desire to win of both sides will carry through to Game Three and beyond, Martinez also assured that referees will be on their toes for the rest of the series.
“Alam mo when you want something that bad, minsan kung ano ano ang nagagawa natin, pero again basta't within the rules and what is allowed, hindi pipituhan 'yan. Pero nakatutok ng mabuti mga referees natin, kasi pinoprotektahan rin natin ang welfare ng players,” said Martinez.
Martinez, in fact, said the intensity of both teams has resulted in games that fans want to see.
“And it’s how the PBA is allowing the players to play. Mas naging intense ang mga games natin. Mas naging determined ang mga players to perform. Walang parelax-relax,” he said. “It is how the level of basketball is played in the league.”
“Ganito ang laro ng PBA,iba na ang paradigm of how the game is played in the PBA and it was informed to the teams. Every team knows it.”
“ The game has become exciting for the teams and the fans, and our competitiveness in the PBA made our players tough and ready for the international competitions,” added Martinez.