Tanduay mulling suit to keep Belo
TANDUAY Light won’t let Mac Belo go just yet even if the PBA D-League has ruled that MJM M-Builders owns the playing rights to the Far Eastern University hotshot.
Coach Lawrence Chongson said Tanduay is mulling legal action, noting that Belo still has a live contract with the squad.
But a representative of Belo, who starred in the Tamaraws’ run to the UAAP Finals this season, said the star forward’s new team will assist him.
“The PBA is staying away from it because it’s an internal issue,” said Chongson, who also heads Tanduay’s basketball operations.
“What matters to them is the PMF (player membership form) because this is not a pro league. But as I’ve been saying, maybe we don’t have the rights to Belo in the PBA court, but in the Philippine court of law, we have the rights to Belo.”
The PBA’s Development League already settled the case, stressing that it only honors the PMF. And since Belo submitted a signed PMF with the Builders, he got the go-signal to play for the school-based squad.
But Tanduay presented contracts which Belo signed to play for Boracay Rum, the team’s old name, from October 2013 to May 2014 and from October 2014 to May 2015.
“We’re ready to defend Belo,” said manager Edgar Mangahas, who represents the 6-foot-4 cager. “FEU will assist him. We’ll all help him.”
Belo, though, reportedly had a knee injury and sat out the Builders’ first game against Cagayan Valley last Thursday.
Interestingly, Tanduay will kick off its campaign versus the M-Builders on Monday.
Before Belo, Tanduay also lost its second overall Rookie Draft pick Chris Newsome to newcomer Hapee due to a technicality.
Hapee acquired Newsome after Tanduay failed to give Ateneo’s Filipino-American guard a tender offer within the prescribed period.
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