MANILA, Philippines – It has been a year since Calvin Abueva was suspended indefinitely by the PBA, but he still has work to do to complete his return.
PBA commissioner Willie Marcial said Abueva must meet certain demands the league imposed on the enigmatic forward, who was punished in June 2019 for back-to-back on-court incidents.
“We have requirements for him to do, and when he finishes them, we will evaluate and then I will decide,” Marcial said in Filipino during the Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum on Tuesday, June 9.
Abueva became embroiled in controversy when he was seen making masturbatory gestures towards TNT guard Ray Parks’ girlfriend Maika Rivera.
In the following game, the Phoenix forward then clotheslined TNT import Terrence Jones after he was hit in the groin area by the American reinforcement.
That was apparently the last straw for the PBA as Marcial dropped the hammer on Abueva, saying he can no longer allow “offensive and obnoxious on-court behavior” the do-it-all star is known for.
Abueva, though, has since tried to show he is a changed man by issuing a public apology and doing corporate social responsibility activities like helping the victims of the Taal Volcano eruption in January.
In fact, Marcial said in February that Abueva was already in the second stage of the undisclosed two-part league condition.
However, the coronavirus pandemic kept Abueva from accomplishing his end of the bargain, Marcial said.
“It was put on hold because of COVID-19. Maybe he can slowly do our requirements. The sooner, the better.”
Also reeling from the impact of the virus is the PBA, which was forced to shut down its operations in March after just one game into its 45th season.
But with quarantine measures easing, the PBA has sought approval from the government to allow its players to return to training as its first step towards a season restart. – Rappler.com