THE government extending the enhanced community quarantine up to April 30 in the face of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has forced the PBA to a major revamp on its 45th season.
According to PBA commissioner Willie Marcial, the league governors are inclined to reduce the number of season conferences from three to two, but with further adjustments to be made should the COVID-19 crisis persist.
“The leaning of the board right now is two conferences,” said Marcial following the online board meeting called by PBA chairman Ricky Vargas last Tuesday evening.
“Pero kapag humaba pa ang current situation, baka maging isang conference na lang. Kasi nga, the board is also concerned with the welfare of the fans, the employees, and the players,” added Marcial.
All board members and members of the Commissioner’s Office management committee were able to hook up in the online meeting except for NorthPort’s Erick Arejola, who is mourning the passing of his grandmother.
The board is still set to hold the league’s inaugural 3×3 tournament but will decide on the fate of the D-League after the collegiate leagues have made their decisions on their respective 2020 seasons.
“Should they (school leagues) decide to scrap theirs, then the D-League would push through. But we’re also talking to the teams,” said Marcial.
D-League participants are made up mostly of school-based teams.
“As for the 3×3, we’ll convene the teams once the PBA tourney has resumed. The plan remains the same — magsisimula maglaro ang 3×3 sa mga third week ng PBA season,” added Marcial.
In the same online meeting, PBA officials were unanimous in their decision to continue to help the regular PBA employees, as well as the PBA game-day personnel like the referees, table officials, statisticians and others.
They are also pitching in to help the frontliners in the battle against the deadly disease.
“The board has decided to donate P1 million worth of PPEs. I was tasked to be the point man. Ako ang maghahanap ng gagawa ng PPEs, at i-do-donate namin ito doon sa mga mas nangangailangan,” said Marcial.
The board will meet again before April 30.