Salud nixes Marcio Lassiter trade
MANILA, Philippines—Those dashes in the lane that Marcio Lassiter used to make in a Powerade uniform won’t be seen in another team. At least for now.
PBA Commissioner Chito Salud Monday shot down the trade proposal that could have sent the electrifying rookie to Petron Blaze, asking the ball clubs involved to revise the deal and make the swap more palatable.
At the same time, Salud emphasized the need for the pro league to install guidelines that would prevent teams from dealing away their topnotch players while the franchise is being peddled on the market.
Lassiter, tabbed fourth overall by the Tigers in the Draft, has been dangled by Powerade for sophomore players Nonoy Baclao and Rey Guevarra while the negotiations for the sale of the Coca-Cola franchise have been feverishly ongoing.
“The board has agreed in the next board meeting that the commissioner will be proposing rules precisely to cover that vacuum,” said Salud.
“Collectively, we will formulate rules to avoid the unloading or trading of players in contemplation of a sale,” he added during Monday’s PBA Board of Governors emergency meeting attended by representatives of the 10 ball clubs.
Ronnie Asuncion, acting Coca-Cola governor, also reiterated to the board that the beverage company’s franchise in the PBA hasn’t been sold or transferred to another firm, quashing speculations that San Miguel Corporation has purchased the Tigers to the tune of P100 million.
“This meeting has allowed us to explain our position that no sale has been done, no sums of money have been exchanged between two parties. Interest has been shown but no sale has been concluded,” said Asuncion, who filled the shoes of former PBA vice chair JB Baylon as team representative.
Baylon resigned as communications director for Coca-Cola export last Friday.
Asuncion even reinforced hopes of Coca-Cola’s prolonged stay in the league by claiming the Tigers would win the championship in the ongoing Commissioner’s Cup after their failed mission in the Finals last conference.
“Having established that no sale was consummated, the two teams (Petron and Powerade) can now make trades,” said Salud.
The board also agreed during the meeting that PBA treasurer and Barangay Ginebra alternate governor Robert Non would succeed PBA chair Mamerto Mondragon next season.
Also present during the meeting were Talk ‘N Text’s Patrick Gregorio, Meralco’s Ramon Seguismundo, Joaqui Trillo of Alaska, Rene Pardo of B-Meg, Ely Capacio of Petron, Barako Bull’s Ernie Dinopol and Air21’s Sheila Lina.
Meanwhile, the league has approved American Kirk Long’s appeal to play in the PBA D-League. The PBA turned down the 6-foot-1 Ateneo hotshot’s initial request to play in the pros.
In another development, Meralco has brought in a stand-by import in 7-footer Earl Barron, who played for Red Bull in 2005.
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