Guiao calls on PBA to be proactive in seeking restart


Posted at Jul 09 2020 01:01 PM

MANILA, Philippines -- NLEX head coach Yeng Guiao said the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) has to remain proactive in pushing for its return, after already getting the go-signal for teams to resume training. 

The PBA submitted protocols for teams' return to training last month to the Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) and the Department of Health, and last week received the green light from the IATF to resume practices.

Commissioner Willie Marcial will meet with coaches and team managers on Friday to expound on the protocols and get their comments and suggestions as well.

Guiao is in favor of a proactive approach, saying that the league should "try something" even though a vaccine for COVID-19 has yet to be made available.

"Dalawa lang ang choice natin -- maghintay tayo ng vaccine na 'di natin alam kung kailan dadatin, o gumawa tayo ng paraan," Guiao said, as quoted by the league website.

"While there's still no vaccine, let's try something," he said.

Guiao, a former member of the House of Representatives, pointed out that sports is "the least of the problems" for the government, which has its hands full in the fight against the pandemic.

As of Wednesday afternoon, there are 50,359 total cases of COVID-19 in the Philippines, with 1,314 since the outbreak started. 

"We have to look for our own solution and be proactive," Guaio stressed. "Ang dami nilang problema kung sila ang iintayin natin. We have to start pushing for our own resumption."

While practices of professional football and basketball teams have been allowed, five-on-five games remain barred, particularly in areas under the general community quarantine such as Metro Manila. The PBA itself only allows six persons per training session, as per its own protocols.

Guiao expects the government to remain "conservative" in its approach to the resumption of sporting events, which is why the PBA has to make the first move.

"We have to present something to the government, hindi ang government ang mag-iisip sa atin," he stressed.

Guiao's Road Warriors have yet to play this season, after the PBA called off all activities in March due to the health crisis. The Road Warriors were actually set to play on the same day that the league decided to suspend all games.

(For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website).