PBA: Ginebra taking ‘wait-and-see’ approach on Justin Brownlee
MANILA, Philippines–Barangay Ginebra is still awaiting the official word on the status of its resident Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) import Justin Brownlee.
“We’re just waiting. As of now, we’re on wait-and-see,” team governor and San Miguel Corp. sports director Alfrancis Chua said Tuesday afternoon during the league’s season kick-off presser at Diamond Hotel in Manila.
Brownlee could be slapped with a two-year ban from Fiba-sanctioned basketball tournaments after testing positive for Carboxy-THC, a banned substance in the rules employed during the Hangzhou Asian Games.
That means the suspension will keep the do-it-all forward from backstopping the Gin Kings in this coming Commissioner’s Cup, and his pet tournament Governors’ Cup.
Worse, Brownlee will be in freezer, denying the Gilas program an easily accessible naturalized player for international competitions, including the Olympic Qualifying Tournament set July next year.
“We haven’t heard of any sanctions yet. We will await for those sanctions. Then that’s the time for us to respond,” added chair Ricky Vargas.
Brownlee, who has been provisionally suspended by the International Testing Agency, can invoke his rights and get an appeal in motion, which will lead to the opening of his other urine sample. But Chua feels that doing so will still yield a positive result.
Which is why the Ginebra executive is simply waiting for the official communication as it will lead to another scenario: A window to reduce the duration of the ban.
Philippine Olympic Committee president Bambol Tolentino has since said that Brownlee’s ban can be reduced to three months, and even to just a month which should be the rosiest for both Ginebra and Gilas.