06 July 2018

PBA To Wait For FIBA Sanctions On Players Involved In Brawl

FIBA Sanctions
According to ABS-CBN News, the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) officials met with the players involved in the controversial brawl between Gilas Pilipinas and Australia, but refrained from imposing any sanctions.

In a closed-door meeting at the PBA office in Libis last 5 June, commissioner Willie Marcial heard the explanation of the players who engaged the Boomers in an unsightly melee at the Philippine Arena in Bulacan – an event that put a harsh spotlight on Philippine basketball.

"Tinanong namin 'yung sitwasyon, kung saan nagsimula, kung bakit nangyari 'yun," Marcial said. "Nag-kwento sila."

"Nagsalita naman sila, pero pinagsabihan namin," he added. "Sana, 'di na maulit, lalo na sa PBA. Huwag na maulit. Ganoon lang ang tema (ng usapan)."

Present at the meeting were Gilas skipper Gabe Norwood, June Mar Fajardo and Baser Amer – the only three players who remained for the Philippines in the wake of the melee.

Also there were Roger Pogoy, Calvin Abueva, Carl Bryan Cruz, Japeth Aguilar, Jayson Castro, Troy Rosario, Matthew Wright, and Terrence Romeo – all of whom were thrown out of the contest.

Jiovani Jalalon and Allein Maliksi – two players who were not in the active line-up but also got involved in the brawl – also attended the meeting.

Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) president Al Panlilio and Philippine Olympic Committee (POC) secretary-general Pato Gregorio were also present.

As of now, the PBA opted not to impose any sanctions on the players, especially as FIBA is just beginning its investigation into the incident.

"Hindi pa namin alam kung ano ang mangyayari," said Marcial.

"Hinihintay namin talaga 'yung investigation ng FIBA, kung ano talaga ang gagawin nila. Then, siguro saka kami magko-convene ulit kung ano ang gagawin," he added.

Marcial said that if the players are suspended in FIBA competitions, then the PBA will respect that decision. However, if their suspensions will extend to the professional league, the PBA fully intends to file an appeal.

"Kung suspension (ay) hanggang sa FIBA, susundin namin," he said. "Kung suspension (ay) hanggang PBA, aapila kami."

"Kapag nadamay ang PBA, hihingi kami ng appeal, at magpapatulong kami kay Boss Al (Panlilio)," he further explained.

FIBA has given SBP until July 10 to submit its explanation of the events of July 2.

Panlilio could not offer an exact timeline, but expects FIBA to move swiftly. A decision may come by the end of the month, according to the SBP executive.

In the meantime, Marcial said the players should move on from the incident.

"Sa amin lang, move on na tayo at sorry sa mga nasaktan natin," said the PBA Commissioner.

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