Photo from FIBA
With two international competitions coming to Gilas' way, the PBA must now decide
The Philippine basketball is facing a busy schedule this year as the PBA is now in the near climax of its opening conference. On the international perspective, Gilas Pilipinas will have to find ways to make things work as they are scheduled to play in the third window of the FIBA World Cup Asian Qualifiers this coming June plus the Asian Games followed by the fourth window of the World Cup Qualifiers. A hectic schedule, right?
Of course, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas is willing to sit down with PBA officials to determine if schedule changes are needed to allow the top players of the country to focus on representing the Filipinos on the international scene. Who will make up the national team who will play in the said competitions will be up to the PBA.
According to SBP President Al Panlilio, SBP intends to send Gilas to the Asian Games in Indonesia but he also stated the need for the SBP and the PBA to work on the schedules to avoid conflicts as well as to assure that the health of the players is not being compromised.
Here's the catch, folks, if the PBA is more than willing to send the league's best players to the said competitions, then the league must be willing to compromise. Compromise? Yes. It might even require the PBA to suspend games to allow players to put their utmost focus on winning for the flag. Is the PBA going to do that? Let's hope so.
To give credit to PBA, they already made the necessary arrangements to accommodate the third window of the World Cup Qualifiers this June but the Asian Games and the fourth window of the World Cup Qualifiers in September will be two weeks apart which means the PBA will be going to be out of action for around a month.
Greatness requires sacrifices and compromises.
The PBA, through Commissioner Willie Marcial, has been keeping an open line of communication between the league and our national right after the second window of the World Cup Qualifiers where Gilas went 1-1. Now, should SBP come up with a proposal to suspend PBA games during the two competitions in September, it's not rocket science that the league should take the health of their players into consideration when deciding because it's not easy to have two things you need to do. Fortunately, the 2 events are 5 months away which means both the SBP and the PBA still have the time to sort things out.