PBA body to meet on PH buildup

By Nelson Beltran, The Philippine Star

Posted at Jan 24 2013 09:57 AM | Updated as of Jan 25 2013 01:30 AM

MANILA, Philippines - The PBA board of governors convenes in a crucial meeting today to address concerns over the formation of the national team and how the league could help in the team buildup for the Fiba Asian qualifier which the country will host this August.

The meeting is set at the PBA office in Libis, Quezon City.

The pro league officials will work on the composition of the team, and probably agree on a shortened season-ending Governors Cup to give the Nationals time to focus on training in the run-up to the 2013 FIBA Asia Championship in Aug. 1-11 at the MOA Arena in Pasay.

The league board discusses these matters following pronouncements that the PBA will throw full support and cooperation to help the country achieve its goals in the Asian championship serving as the regional qualifier for the 2014 FIBA World Cup.

"For sure, those issues will be tackled," said PBA commissioner Chito Salud.

"The commissioner will present his proposal then the board will talk about it," board chair Robert Non said earlier.

Both officials hinted at compressing the third conference format and schedule to give Gilas Pilipinas some breathing room in the last stage of its buildup for the Asian joust.

That's the biggest concern since the original PBA season schedule is ending last week of July then the FIBA Asia event unwraps immediately after.

"For a brief background, we'd already compressed our schedule as we're told FIBA Asia will start last week of August or the first week of September," said Salud.

However, Non said the league is ready to take a look at best alternatives to make it viable for the PBA and the FIBA Asia event to co-exist.

Lending of players to the national team seems to be a lesser concern now since teams have already committed to release a player each to Smart Gilas. The question is whether there are other teams outside of Talk n Text, Meralco and Rain or Shine willing to loan more than one player.

Then there's the clamor for coach Chot Reyes to just get the core of the Talk n Text champion team and then fill the remaining spots with players like Gary David, Arwind Santos, Junmar Fajardo, Jeff Chan, Gabe Norwood, LA Tenorio and Marc Pingris.