TWO league governors were quick to play down a reported spat at the sidelines of the heated match between San Mig Coffee and Meralco in the PBA Governors Cup semifinals on Sunday night.
Witnesses said Meralco board representative Ramon Segismundo and San Mig governor Rene Pardo exchanged angry gestures during one controversial play just before halftime in the Mixers' 79-73 victory in Game Four.
Segismundo, who is the incoming league chairman, admitted he made gestures towards the San Mig bench but said it was not directed at any member of the team but at a referee which Pardo and Mixers coach Tim Cone were talking to at that time.
“There was this call and there was this referee that Tim Cone and gov Pardo were talking to,” Segismundo said. “I just also made it known my opinion on the call … but nothing to it!"
Segismundo pointed out that in his three years as part of the league, it was his first time on Sunday night to sit on the Meralco bench to show his full support to the players and coaches.
“It’s not in my nature to be confrontational,” added the Meralco senior vice president for human resources and corporate services.
Pardo, on the other hand, said he doesn’t believe the Meralco official is capable of doing such act.
“It was in the heat of the moment. And I don’t think Ramon can do that!” Pardo said. “Saka naiintindihan ko rin sila kasi they really wanted to bring their team to their first-ever finals.”
Segismundo is known as as one of the league’s ‘Mr. Nice Guys,' and the amiable Meralco official said he’d rather keep his image that way.
“I was just passionate about the game … but not to the point of getting hostile towards officials of other teams,” he said.
“I maybe at the heat of the passion at that time, pero no way na mag-aaway kami!” Segismundo said.
Both Segismundo and Pardo told Spin.ph they embraced just outside the teams' dugouts right after the Mixers’ wrapped up the best-of-five semifinal series, 3-1.
“We have been friends … and we remain the best of friends,” Segismundo said.
Pardo said: “Nag-usap pa kami right after the game eh, nag-congratulate pa nga siya. Wala yun."