Mendoza: Walkout weak alibi to protest referee’s call-A A +A
Sunday, March 2, 2014
BACOLOD — Again, the PAL Interclub Golf takes the back seat as it gives way to the brouhaha-hit Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).
As everybody knows, Rain or Shine took the spotlight away from San Mig Coffee when it absorbed a P2-million fine for staging a walkout over a referee’s call.
It was both an auspicious and a sad day for Philippine basketball.
Auspicious because for defeating Rain or Shine 93-87 for the title-clinching Game 6 victory, San Mig Coffee scored a back-to-back PBA success following its classic 4-3 conquest in October of Petron Blaze to win the Governor’s Cup.
It’s been quite a while since we last saw a team snatch successive title triumphs but then, San Mig Coffee’s latest feat that saw the Mixers capture their sixth All-Filipino crown—a league best since the PBA’s birth in 1975—got marred by that ill-advised Rain or Shine walkout on Wednesday night.
It was a partial walkout, yes, because Rain or Shine came back to resume action. But partial or not, it will always be a walkout—an act too shameful to dismiss that easily.
Isn’t it a fact that the league is a shining symbol of sportsmanship? Or, better yet, hasn’t it been always inculcated in us all this time that every member of the PBA, player or water boy, coach or owner, is a role model for our youth to emulate?
Definitely and absolutely, therefore, the act of walking out of a game is a supreme insult not only to the paying public but also to the PBA itself, whose code of conduct has been the emblem for which the league had relentlessly leaned on since its birth in 1975.
Now, if it’s any consolation for that unfortunate act, Rain or Shine owners “only” drew a P2-million fine. Had it decided not to return to the hard court, Rain or Shine would have been slapped a P10-million penalty as stipulated in the PBA rule book.
Commissioner Chito Salud had the thankless job of imposing the full weight of the rule. But he had to do it if only to carry out the best interest of the league and the public for which the PBA has, since time immemorial, consistently drawn its strength.
Let this be a lesson.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 02, 2014.