The PBA won’t be able to stage its 46th Season until COVID-19 cases in the country start going down.
League commissioner Willie Marcial bared on Thursday the conditions set by the national government a day after he, together with SMC sports director Alfrancis Chua, met with Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea and Senator Bong Go in Malacañang.
Marcial stressed that not even the vaccination of the entire PBA family would be enough to get the go-signal.
“Nag-request tayo kung ano pupuwede. Sinabi nila na, one, kailangan bumaba talaga ang ating cases ng COVID. Kung hindi bababa, baka hindi tayo makapaglaro,” explained Marcial during a virtual press briefing.
“Nag-request ako sa kanya na kung pupuwede, bigyan tayo ng pagkakataon para makapag-umpisa na ang PBA na makapaglaro at magsimula ng ensayo. Depende sa IATF kung bababa ang cases natin o ganito, bakit hindi,” added Chua.
While a bubble is still one of the setups being considered, the league is more amenable to a closed-circuit arrangement wherein teams can go home after practices and games.
Once the league gets the green light from the IATF, Marcial said that the league is targeting a June opening with two conferences running until December.