THE Calvin Abueva case was not the first time.
In the Seventies, Robert Jaworski and Alberto “Big Boy” Reynoso lost their player’s license for a grave misconduct on the basketball floor.
In the Nineties, Rudy Distrito suffered a similar fate.
But while Jaworski and Reynoso got canned for hitting the referees, Distrito was sacked for going under a player trying to score on a layup.
The sin of Jaworski and Reynoso was never replicated again in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA).
But Distrito’s rough play, almost a trademark for the Bacolod native, still dents the PBA once in a while. Distrito was a recidivist. He loved playing it rough.
In fact, Distrito’s temper led him to jail after killing a Mexican in a parking lot fight years after Rudy migrated to the U.S.
Not for anything but I pitched in my humble, hard-earned dollars, to Distrito to help pay for his court litigation. To be commended profusely for this “pass the hat” effort is Elmer Yanga, who went to friends for financial assistance to Distrito.
Fortunately, Distrito was acquitted, the American judge giving weight to Distrito’s position of self-defense.
Distrito is back in Manila a wholly reformed man. He is now in the staff of Commissioner Kenneth Duremdes in the MPBL (Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League) being bankrolled by Manny Pacquiao.
And now this, Abueva getting himself suspended indefinitely for acts inimical to the interests of the PBA.
He had clotheslined a la Abueva a driving player, mockingly danced before league officials and, worst, foulmouthed the girlfriend of a fellow player by calling her a “bitch.”
Each of the three infractions is enough reason to bundle Abueva out of the league.
If you ask me, his indefinite suspension is too light. You want to hit him where it hurts the most? Fine him P1 million. Ban him for life.
I know he’s got a family, kids. But did he ever think of them before he did those dastardly acts?
Commissioner Marcial, you want to teach someone a lesson, go for the jugular. Banish him to Timbuktu. Siberia would be heaven.