PBA shoulders entire cost of bubble, teams won’t spend ‘single centavo’
MANILA, Philippines—The PBA’s hosting of its bubble in Clark, Pampanga comes at a hefty price but none of the teams will be spending a single peso for it.
In a Zoom press conference, Board chairman Ricky Vargas was mum about the actual cost but he admitted that the league will be “spending quite a sum of money to see this through.”
“Maybe we should not even advertise the cost, I apologize,” said Vargas.
The PBA will be spending around three months in Clark to resume its season with teams set to arrive at Quest Hotel on September 26 and scrimmages beginning the day after.
Official matches will then start on October 9 with the end of the Philippine Cup pegged at the middle of December.
Despite the huge cost, Vargas said that the teams did not have to spend to get the bubble going.
“The teams will not spend a single centavo for this whole bubble,” said Vargas.
“The nice part about this is that your PBA, just like the NBA, has enough cash flow. Teams did not spend.”
The PBA, however, received a lot of help from Vince Dizon, Bases and Conversion Development Authority president, in the creation of the confined environment and the partnership with Quest Hotel.
League Commissioner Willie Marcial said Dizon helped them in receiving a sizable discount from the hotel and was also instrumental in pushing for Angeles University Foundation as the designated game venue and the PBA’s use of recreational facilities in Clark.
Dizon, as the boss of BCDA, oversaw the construction of the needed infrastructure at New Clark City for the 2019 Southeast Asian Games.
Another factor why Clark was chosen as the site of the bubble was its proximity to medical facilities. Those who will be living in the bubble will be tested every 14 days.
Marcial said the PBA will follow the Department of Health protocol for PCR testing.
“We will follow the protocols of Clark and all testings will be done in Clark,” said Vargas. “There is also a laboratory in Clark so it makes it even more convenient to do the testing based on whatever the protocol the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force for Emerging Infectious Diseases), DOH, plus the Clark City itself are currently doing. That’s how we look at it.”
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