PBA Governors' Cup

PBA postpones all games this week due to Alert Level 3

JR Isaga
PBA postpones all games this week due to Alert Level 3

BLOCKBUSTER. Jio Jalalon's Magnolia and LA Tenorio's Ginebra face off in the Manila Clasico last Christmas.

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The PBA gets shelved again just weeks after welcoming fans back in the stands

MANILA, Philippines – The PBA has postponed all of its scheduled Governors’ Cup games this week after the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) raised Metro Manila to Alert Level 3 following a big surge of COVID-19 cases.

The decision comes as the league awaits a confirmation and further instructions from the Games and Amusements Board (GAB) for the continuation of its operations.

In an official statement on Monday, January 3, the PBA also noted that it needs the approval of various local government units (LGUs) before resumption of play.

PBA action was set to resume with a double-header at the Araneta Coliseum on Wednesday, January 5, after a nine-day holiday break.

Things were already looking up for the league during the holidays after it allowed fans to return to the Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City, which reportedly drew almost 5,000 fans for its Manila Clasico battle between the Magnolia Hotshots and Barangay Ginebra.

Prior to the postponement of games, the PBA was already set on returning to the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City, which previously hosted the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) Invitational, also with fans.

However, the recent virus surge and the reimposition of Alert Level 3 restrictions mean that contact sports such as basketball may only be played under a bubble setup, which the PBA has already done for the 2020 and 2021 PBA Philippine Cup both outside Metro Manila.

The league also previously held games, and even its inaugural 3×3 tournament, in a closed-circuit format at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.

The PBA may revert to this home-gym-home system without fans in attendance unless authorities deem the need for stricter measures involving a bubble setup, or the stoppage of play altogether for the time being. – Rappler