TNT will no longer pursue protesting its 121-110 Game 1 defeat to San Miguel on Game 1 of the best-of-three quarterfinals in the 2018 PBA Commissioner’s Cup on Monday.
KaTropa team manager Virgil Villavicencio relayed that they have accepted the defeat, where they squandered a 23-point second quarter lead and saw the Beermen rampage back in the game and take the 11-point win.
Rather, TNT is focusing on equalizing the series on Wednesday, with Game 2 slated at Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Team officials, led by Villavicencio and head coach Nash Racela, expressed displeasure with how game officials, namely referees Jimmy Mariano, Sherwin Pineda, Emy Tangkion, and Jerry Narandan, handled the game which saw San Miguel shoot 31-of-40 free throws to TNT’s 8-of-18.
Adding to the fire were what TNT felt were soft calls on Joshua Smith that led to his graduation with 3:39 with the Beermen slightly ahead, 110-106.
Villavicencio signed the scoresheet and wrote, “Under Protest,” immediately after the game, while Racela quipped: “Tanungin mo bakit ganoon tawag nila.”
PBA commissioner Willie Marcial clarified that signing the scoresheet meant nothing unless the team submits a formal letter of protest before 12 noon the following day.