SINGAPORE—Some board members of the Philippine Basketball Association favor the idea of holding the season-ending Governors’ Cup after the Fiba-Asia World Championship qualifying in August to give coach Chot Reyes ample time to prepare the Gilas-Pilipinas squad.
With the best players now practically available for the tournament that will send the top three teams to the Worlds in Madrid, Reyes needs only ample time to whip the team into a great one.
Under the original schedule, the Governors’ Cup could run until July 28, three days before the opening of the Fiba-Asia which will run up to Aug. 11. But the board, realizing the value of long preparation, has authorized commissioner Chito Salud to tinker with that schedule to give the Nationals the time they need to jell without disrupting the PBA calendar.
Salud had said that he would reduce the schedule as “much as practicable,” even entertaining the idea of holding just the elimination round of the tournament and resuming with the playoffs after the Fiba-Asia.
But the idea of opening in late August seems to sit well with some members of the board who are here for the league’s regular meeting before the Commissioner’s Cup with Alaska’s Richard Bachmann saying that “it’s a better option for us.”
“If it’s for the country, we’re all for it,” said Rain or Shine’s Mamerto Mondragon.
“Since we are helping them already, why not help them all out,” said Air21 governor Lito Alvarez.
Meanwhile, Japeth Aguilar may just find his way back in the PBA if a complicated, multi-team, multi-player trade is completed after negotiations with team representatives here.
Aguilar, who is holding out on renewing his contract with Talk ‘N Text, could ultimately land in Barangay Ginebra before the start of the Commissioner’s Cup on Friday next week.
Sol Mercado, who led Meralco in scoring and assists in the Philippine Cup, is also involved in the deal together with the veteran Kerby Raymundo, Jay Washington of Petron Blaze and the underachieving Rabeh Al-Hussain of Globalport.
The deal is so complicated that the only clear movement so far is for Aguilar going to Globalport and then to Ginebra in exchange for Al-Hussaini.