‘Beast’ unleashed: PBA finally lifts suspension on Abueva
CLARK FREEPORT — The Philippine Basketball Association on Sunday announced that it has lifted the suspension on Phoenix forward Calvin Abueva.
Commissioner Willie Marcial himself broke the news to reporters here, saying he sat down with Abueva, Fuel Masters team manager Paolo Bugia, and coach Topex Robinson with his staff on Saturday.
“He said he was thankful and was going to do everything to make the most out fresh opportunity,” the league chief said over the phone.
Abueva posted a photo of Mother Mary’s statue on his Instagram with the caption “Thank you, God is good,” around the same time he met with Marcial, deputy commissioner Eric Castro and technical officer Mauro Bengua.
Abueva has since been cleared to rejoin the team’s practices since he entered the bubble. But the development now allows the enigmatic athlete to fully participate in all league and team activities.
He returns to action for Phoenix (3-2) this Monday, against the struggling NLEX (1-4).
The 16-month suspension on the former Gilas player and one-time PBA champion is the longest ban imposed on any local throughout the league’s recent history.
“He’s not the savior for us,” Robinson said in a previous interview. “He’s not gonna save the day for us. But having him there, for sure, would make this more a potent team.
Marcial said Abueva remains under observation even after the lifting of his suspension, even laying down fines for specific offenses in the future.
Abueva was fined and barred from play in June 2019 for offenses ranging from an obscene gesture toward a fan and a clothesline hit on former TNT import Terrence Jones.