YENG Guiao on Monday aired the hope for fair and competent officiating in the PBA Commissioner's Cup Finals, saying it should be the teams, and not the referees, who should decide the Rain or Shine-Talk 'N Text face-off.
Known to be critical of officiating in the past, Guiao said the best-of-seven series kicking off on Wednesday features two evenly matched teams that have been the top seeds since the eliminations, adding it would be a shame if the finals will be tainted by bum calls.
“Patas na patas ang match n'ya. Tiyak ko mga laro namin magiging close, if not very close talaga. Kaya sana naman, hayaan ng mga referees na ang dalawang teams ang magdikta sa resulta ng mga laro,” said Guiao.
“Teams are going to be very competitive, especially in this series, it’s going to be very close. Officiating will count a lot, maaring ang isang laro ay ma-decide ng one or two possessions. Very close game,” he added.
Guiao said basketball fans have seen close games in the past that were decided by a call or two, something that he hopes won’t happen in the coming finals.
“'Pag nagkamali ang referee (sa close game) ibig sabihin siya na ang nag-decide ng resulta… 'yun ang ayaw natin,” he said. “The two best teams in the league, deserve the best officiating from the league also.”
The six-time champion coach nonetheless lauded the strict sanctioning and policing implemented by PBA commissioner Chito Salud on erring referees in the conference.
One referee, Rey Yante, was suspended for the rest of the conference while another, Art Herrera, was banned for five games for mistakes made in games involving Rain or Shine.
On the other hand, Rommel Gruta was also hit with a ban for his failure to call an out-of-bounds and a 24-second shot clock violation in Rain or Shine’s quarterfinals win over Baranga Ginebra last month.
“I think the league is capable of giving that. Positive development nga yung huli na nasuspend yung si (referee Rey) Yante, ni-review yung mga tawag, maaring masabi natin na positive sign 'yun,” said Guiao.