A LOT of fans found Rico Maierhofer's 'shoe block' on Gabby Espinas in the San Miguel-Barako Bull game on Wednesday night pretty amusing.
Yeng Guiao doesn't find it funny.
Guiao, in fact, is left fuming on why PBA referees allowed the bizarre play to happen without making a call, saying it has turned the pro league into the laughing stock in the world of basketball.
“It’s ridiculous. Kalokohan ang tingin ko run. It’s so absurd that they can let something like that go on. Kahit saan ka magpunta, may problema run eh,” the outspoken Rain or Shine coach told Spin.ph on Thursday.
They Said It!
“That "shoe-pal-pal" incident was not even a 'judgement call situation' for the referees but rather a perfect time to apply 'common sense' at that very instance." woodpusher
Guiao, a former commissioner of the Philippine Basketball League (PBL), said referees in inter-barangay leagues would know what to call when confronted with the same situation.
He wondered out loud why PBA didn't know how to handle the play, although league officials admitted there was no such provision in their rule book that applies to such situations.
“Parang laughingstock na tuloy tayo sa nangyayaring ganyan. Kahit nga sa barangay (leagues), 'yung referee dun puwedeng tumawag ng kahit na ano, technical foul o ano, itigil mo lang 'yung laro eh,” he said.
The former national coach said this single play is indicative of the 'sub-par' officiating that he claimed is the root cause of all the problems plaguing the 40-year-old pro league.
PBA referees, plain and simple, don't know the rules, he fumed.
“It’s really a picture of how officiating is in the PBA,” said Guiao, one of the biggest critics of officiating in the league. “The problem is they don’t know what the rules are.”
“Ako naman ever since 'yan ang sinasabi ko: ‘I-address ninyo ang officiating.' May problema tayo sa officiating,” he added. “It is indicative of the whole problem of what officiating is in the PBA. Tingin ko nga huli na ang lahat eh, ang tagal nang may problema sa officiating.
“Maybe 'yun nga, tama nga 'yung pananon na we should have a new commissioner to run the game.”
Another former PBL commissioner, Chino Trinidad, shared the same sentiment.
“'Yan ang pagpapakita what kind of a joke the PBA has amounted to ngayon. Not even the players show respect for the sanctity of the game,” said Trinidad, a veteran sports journalist and TV commentator.
Trinidad wondered why the referees particularly Art Herrera, who was on top of the play, never bothered to blow his whistle.
“Alam mo, kahit mga basketball players sa kanto, alam (ang gagawin) 'pag may gumawa nun. Pero the referees allowed it. Practical thinking lang 'yun, alam mo na ang sapatos o any foreign object gagamitin mo para pangtapal,” he said.
“Yung mga referees rin kasi ngayon hindi na alam kung ano ang tama at mali.”
Listen to Spin.ph interview with Guiao and Trinidad: