RoS' Paul Lee gets entangled with San Mig Coffee's Marqus Blakely, James Yap and Marc Pingris in Game 1 of the their PBA Governors' Cup finals. Photo by Mark Cristino for ABS-CBNnews.com
MANILA, Philippines – For Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Commissioner Chito Salud, what happened during the dying seconds of Game 1 of the Governors’ Cup Finals between Rain or Shine and San Mig Coffee was a judgment call on the part of the referees.
Salud said on Wednesday that his office has already reviewed the controversial play between Paul Lee and Marc Pingris wherein Lee muffed his three-point attempt after a contact with the San Mig defender.
The referees didn’t blow the whistle on Pingris and allowed the Coffee Mixers to take a 104-101 victory over the Elasto Painters.
“Upon review of the play, this Office finds it to be a straight-up borderline call that could have gone either way. It was a down the line, 50-50 judgment call,” the PBA chieftain said in a statement.
“It can be debated and second guessed, but the referees’ judgment cannot be faulted under the circumstances.”
This ran contrary to the observation of former PBA technical head Perry Martinez who was quoted on TV as saying that Pingris should have been called for a foul for the contact.
A foul could have been given Lee the chance to tie the game as it took place beyond the three-point line.
But PBA bureau head Willie Marcial said the league has no plan of stopping Martinez from commenting on the officiating.
"Kung 'yun ang nakita ni Perry sa vantage point niya at sa replay, igagalang namin 'yun. Pero hindi nangangahulugan na 'yun na rin ang desisyon ng liga. We will conduct a more thorough investigation and review," said Marcial in an interview with Spin.ph’s Richard Dy.
Martinez serves as a referee analyst during the games, providing viewers an analysis on the referees’ calls.