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PBA chairman Vargas ‘bothered’ by Alaska owner Uytengsu’s grievances

Delfin Dioquino
PBA chairman Vargas ‘bothered’ by Alaska owner Uytengsu’s grievances
Instead of making public statements, Vargas says Uytengsu should instead voice out his concerns to the PBA board of governors

MANILA, Philippines – PBA chairman Ricky Vargas called out Alaska team owner Wilfred S. Uytengsu for airing his grievances in public and saying “it’s two companies that are essentially running the league.” 

Uytengsu appeared in ESPN5’s Sportscenter earlier this week and talked about transactions that create an “unlevel playing field” and teams dubiously working around the designated salary cap to form super teams. 

“I am deeply bothered by public statements made by W.S. Uytengsu of Alaska but I leave it to the PBA ethics committee to review his remarks, and if necessary, to take appropriate action,” Vargas said in a statement. 

It is not the first time Uytengsu voiced out his concerns regarding the lack of parity in the league, slamming teams that utilize “underhanded tactics” during the PBA Press Corps Awards on January 21. 

But instead of making public statements, Vargas said Uytengsu should bring the matter to the PBA board of governors, where Alaska governor Dickey Bachmann serves as vice chairman. 

“There he can formalize his grievance and submit proof to substantiate his claims. No storytelling nor hearsay. Making unfounded statements will only be detrimental to the league.” 

“Moreover, as far as my term as chairman is concerned, none of the insinuations made by WSU were ever raised in the PBA board.”

Vargas added Uytengsu’s remarks wouldn’t help the league “move forward,” especially after teams were divided into two blocs in 2017 regarding the tenure of then-commissioner Chito Narvasa.

Narvasa, who approved the controversial trade that dealt Columbian’s 2017 first overall pick to San Miguel, had since been replaced by Willie Marcial.

“We have already hurdled a challenge that divided us in the recent past. We now have a commissioner who is grounded with his work. Baseless statements will not help us move forward,” Vargas said.

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Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.