Ginebra Gin Kings opt not to protest controversial tiff
BARANGAY Ginebra opted not to protest its controversial quarterfinal setback at the hands of GlobalPort last Sunday.
As the deadline of filing a formal protest regarding their quarterfinal defeat elapsed yesterday noon, the Gin Kings chose not to make a move, making the Batang Pier’s entry to the semifinals of the 2015-16 Philippine Basketball Association Philippine Cup official.
After Ginebra coach Tim Cone signed the game’s scoresheet bearing GlobalPort’s slim 84-83 overtime triumph in the Knockout Phase Two of the quarterfinal war between the two squads, the Gin Kings opened the possibility of filing a formal protest and was given a 12 noon, Monday deadline should they wish to file one.
The Batang Pier’s victory was surrounded by controversy as game officials did not call a five-second, ball-hogging violation on GlobalPort star Stanley Pringle when the spitfire got trapped by Ginebra gunner Sol Mercado and Greg Slaughter with under eight seconds left and the Gin Kings having a good shot of getting the ball back.
Though it seemed like a five-second violation might have occurred in Cone’s view, there was no whistle made by the referees and Pringle eventually passed the ball in the dying seconds, allowing GlobalPort to escape with the win and enter the semifinals for the first time in franchise history.
After the final horn sounded, Cone and the legions of Ginebra fans were irate, believing that Pringle committed the violation that could’ve given the Gin Kings one last shot of winning and advancing.
Cone and his wards didn’t leave the court right away and approached game officials and PBA leaders regarding a possible miscue on the part of the referees.
But tweets from Ginebra point-forward Joe Devance and Cone in their Twitter accounts may have signified the Gin Kings’ acceptance of their fate as they vowed to get better and looked forward to their next campaign.
‘’Let’s respect that. I love your passion and heart for us! They did their job and we didn’t. Let’s continue to get better! #NSD #Ginebra,’’ said Devance through his @jdv_38 account as he addressed the situation and Ginebra’s fans.
On the other hand, Cone showed optimism despite his team’s exit from the All-Filipino conference.
‘’Players played their hearts out, fans screamed their hearts out. Despite the loss, that makes it a great night. We’ll be back stronger. #NSD,’’ said Cone in his @manilacone Twitter account.
Meanwhile, though Ginebra didn’t file a protest, PBA commissioner Chito Narvasa, through a statement, said that the four referees, Romell Gruta, Mardy Montoya, Bing Oliva and Edward Aquino, are all summoned to a hearing today to state their side on the controversial officiating.
“To be fair, we have scheduled a hearing for the four referees tomorrow (December 29) to determine their performance,’’ said the statement. ‘’After that, we shall come out with our official action on them.’’