Ex-PBA chief says up to PBA to ‘keep integrity’ as controversial trade looms
MANILA, Philippines — While the basketball community was quick to demean San Miguel for yet another lopsided trade proposal, a former PBA commissioner was also vigilant of the other party.
Former commissioner Noli Eala, said Saturday that making trades–no matter the scale–is part of the off-court competition between teams and clubs, who seem to shun away from the challenges of winning a title should never be in the PBA.
“PBA teams will do everything to win,” wrote Eala, who served as commissioner from 2003 to 2007, on Twitter. “That’s inherent in competition. It’s up to the PBA to ensure propriety in trades that are supposed to achieve that goal while keeping league integrity.”
San Miguel, owner of eight of the past 16 championships, sent a trade proposal to the league office for Terrafirma star CJ Perez in exchange for Matt Ganuelas-Rosser, Gelo Alolino, Russel Escoto, and a 2021 first-round pick.
Observers were quick to point out the unfair conditions as Perez is a Mythical Team selection, and a former scoring champion, while the pieces the Beermen were giving the Dyip, have zero All-Star selections between them let alone a spot in the All-PBA team—a distinction that takes higher scrutiny as it’s determined through several factors that include stats and votes from the league and media.
The trade, if it pushes through, will give San Miguel another star in its already stacked roster that has a core of six-time MVP June Mar Fajardo, 2013 MVP Arwind Santos, two-time scoring champion Terrence Romeo, and All-Stars Marcio Lassiter, Alex Cabagnot, and Chris Ross.
San Miguel and Terrafirma had already been involved in a previous controversial deal back in 2017 when the Beermen sent role players Ronald Tubid, Jay-R Reyes, Rashawn McCarthy and the 2019 first-round draft pick, which turned to Christian Balagasay, to the Dyip for the draft rights to Christian Standhardinger.
Eala said that it’s natural for a team to look for improvement every season, no matter its status in the league.
“Those that have no intention of winning championships have no business being in the PBA,” said Eala.
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