MANILA, Philippines – The PBA will fine and possibly suspend Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas program director Tab Baldwin for his comments “detrimental” to the league.
Baldwin, who is also a consultant for the TNT KaTropa, said the PBA “should never have a single import playing on a team” and that imports are given “regulatory advantages” by the league.
The potential fine was first reported by Spin.ph.
“As an industry here, we have one major, major flaw in the basketball landscape of the Philippines and it’s a regulatory flaw and that is that in the PBA, we have 3 conferences [and] 2 of those conferences are a single-import conference. This is a big mistake,” Baldwin said in the Coaches Unfiltered show.
“We should never have a single import playing on a team. Further, we should never have a single import that is given all of the rules latitude that the imports are given here by the referees and by the administration of the PBA and I do believe it is by the administration.”
Baldwin, also a UAAP champion coach with Ateneo, questioned why imports who put up monster numbers in the PBA are not superstars in bigger leagues.
“[T]he reason is they aren’t given the regulatory advantages by the referees that they’re given here. So in other words, put it in layman’s terms, a foul for a PBA player or a local player isn’t a foul on an import. And the foul of an import, that same foul on a local player, isn’t a foul. So our local players are competitively disadvantaged in their ability to compete against the import players and this is not the case in other countries.”
PBA commissioner Marcial said the comments are “uncalled for,” especially when the league is still reeling from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
“We’re trying to give the players and coaches of the PBA family confidence and then this happens,” Marcial said in Filipino through a phone call. “What coach Tab did was wrong timing.”
“He could have talked to me. He could have talked to his head coach, Bong Ravena. He could have talked to our chairman and the governor of Talk ‘N Text, chairman Ricky Vargas.”
Marcial dismissed the impartiality in officiating.
“We don’t have double standard. From Day 1 until the finals, the calls are the same. There’s no double standard,” Marcial said.
Baldwin also touched on how coaches utilize imports by not matching them against each other and by running offensive systems almost solely through imports.
“[I]f you’re a PBA coach and you don’t tactically run your systems through the import, you’re pretty stupid because they are given all of the advantages. The PBA coaches are smart lot. They’re good basketball coaches, but they could be much better if they were forced to coach much more, I believe, I think then they would show their real talents,” Baldwin said.
“[Y]ou get an extraordinary number of free throws through the imports, you get an extraordinary number of easy basket opportunities through the imports, and you get an extraordinary number of situations where the local players literally get out of the way of the imports.”
“I think that system creates a false landscape for our basketball coaches and our basketball players and I think it needs to be changed sooner rather than later.”
Marcial said Baldwin will face the consequences for his remarks.
“We’ll discuss with the technical committee how much we’re going to fine him and if there will be a suspension,” Marcial said. – Rappler.com
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