MANILA -- The Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) said they will hold their three-day planning session slated September 1 to 3 here instead in Hong Kong to show “sympathy and unity” with the families of hostage victims.

Rene Pardo, chairman of the Board of Governors, said it would be unwise for them to hold their long-scheduled trip in the Chinese territory, whose people are still grieving the fate of Hong Kong tourists who were either killed or injured by dismissed policeman Rolando Mendoza on August 23 in Manila.

“We don’t want to give the impression to our Hong Kong neighbors that we are insensitive to their grief. We also want our authorities to conclude their investigation to address the concerns and sentiments of the Hong Kong people,” he said.

Incoming PBA commissioner lawyer Chito Salud, for his part, said the league governors have closely monitored the developments in the Philippines and in Hong Kong.

Set to be discussed in the board meeting are proposals for a three-conference format, the planned D-League and the request of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) to enlist three players for the national team to the 16th Asian Games in Guangzhou, China this November.

The oldest professional basketball league in Asia has just concluded its annual draft last Sunday at Market! Market! in Taguig City. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)