Is the PBA inherently rigged as Don Allado alleges?

But isn’t professional sport inherently rigged? If we are to interpret the response of Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Commissioner Chito Salud to a tweet fielded by Barako Bull player Don Allado where he expressed his opinion about the way things are in the PBA, you’d think that this original of Filipino pro sport leagues is clean as a whistle

“I just want to stress to all our fans, (that) this accusation that the league is rigged, fixed and that we control who goes into the semis, finals and becomes the eventual champion, is baseless,” said Salud.

Kind of comes across like the Pope assuring us that he is Catholic, doesn’t it?

Allado, in a tweet that had since been deleted implied the contrary: “I’m the guy that says what others can’t. #PBA games are fixed. They control who is in & who is out. It’s a disgrace to be in this league.” The question is, does a loud show of indignation from top PBA honchos as well as the hefty fines and sanctions they slapped on Allado (of course they would — because they could) necessarily prove the contrary?

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[Image courtesy]

Perhaps smoke constitutes reasonable empirical evidence of the existence of a fire.

Recall a while back during the impeachment trial of former Chief Justice Renato Corona how the Philippine Senate had reacted with as much indignation when rumours about its members being on the take to the tune of Php100 million each in exchange for a verdict “preferred” by some parties were highlighted by the defense team in a 12th February 2012 press release. Suffice to say, the honourable Senator-Judges were sent huffing and puffing over the outrage (the humanity!) of such unfair claims.

All the while odinary citizens’ eyes simply rolled upwards.

Does the huff and the puff of an “offended” party necessarily prove said party is as honourable as it claims to be? Just recently, boxing champ Manny Pacquiao was himself allegedly (Filipinos insist) the victim of a rigged game after he lost the welterweight title to Timothy Bradley in early June this year. Of course Filipinos will think their “hero” had been cheated out of the victory he was entitled to. It takes one to know one after all.

So is the PBA really as squeaky clean as Salud’s “indignation” and punitive action against Allado implies it is?

Abangan ang susunod na kabanata…

9 Replies to “Is the PBA inherently rigged as Don Allado alleges?”

  1. Even if it doesn’t turn out to be true, once someone tags you as corrupt or biased, the stigma stays with you anyway. That’s a fundamental aspect of da Pinoy condition – guilty even if proven innocent.

  2. It dawned on me one of the main reasons the PBA has a blatant conflict of interest is due to a certain family who at one point owned 3 or 4 of the 8 teams. If you don’t know which family that is, give you a hint. One of them became president two years ago.

  3. Before 1986, Danding Cojuangco could not dominate the PBA. At that time, the San Miguel franchise only had 2 titles. Norman Black’s run of PBA titles for San Miguel came during the Andres Soriano III era. At that time, Ginebra was the only other San Miguel franchise. Danding Cojuangco regained control of San Miguel in 1998. Purefoods became part of SMC later on. The Coca-Cola franchise came in when the SMC bought the RFM franchise. Thus, you had 4 SMC teams in the PBA. Eventually, SMC sold Coca-Cola Bottlers Philippines Inc. back to the Coca-Cola Company in the US. At present, you have 3 SMC teams in the PBA. In the PBA, each team counts as 1 vote in the board. Manny Pangilinan essentially imitated Danding’s formula by buying out a departing franchise (Sta. Lucia). Meralco would become MVP’s second team. Air21 and Barako Bull also have a common owner. Phoenix Petroleum’s attempt to buy the then ailing Barako Bull franchise was blocked by SMC. Thus, there are three corporations owning multiple teams.

    1. Thank you mikemac17. Having a sports league where this is done and not even questioned. Then to get incensed with the accusation of a fix.

    2. My god. As much as the Filipino Pro basketball scene is farm from competitive at all, now its a situation where ownership has come down to three big corporations owning multiple teams. There is no fucking point in funding the smaller teams if your ‘taya’ gets most of the payroll and the star players.

      Then again, as interesting as the evidence to point towards the accusation seems true, considering the lack of real talent that league has I can give a rats arse about it. I only worry if the Philippines finally gets it butt off and funds for a Football league but goes about the same way to set it up. You don’t build future stars to sell to PL or Europe with this method.

  4. The PBA is one big joke. It is a huge marketing ploy that is manipulative. It succeeded in getting fans rooting for teams named after products that are like the players. It is not for export and good for local consumption only. The league may be a commercial success but the quality of the games is more on the “World Wrestling Federation” model. All for show. Our best kuno are scared to join international competitions for fear of humiliation from countries whose number one sport is not even basketball. It is just an inter corporate basketball league that keeps “unionistas” from doing mischievous things.

  5. I, first read this story last Wednesday morning in Twitter, not surprised at all since I have heard about game fixing since the late 70’s, Crispa- Toyota days. A family friend told about it since he’s involved in betting’s then, inside PBA, no “endings” yet just bet on who’ll win the game and few people running it. I’ve felt that those tweets of Don were real so, I said “Oh uh”. Til a news, Wednesday night that the PBA is setting a meeting with Allado, felt that they’ll gonna fix this, once again. I remember an NBI investigation before on a similar allegation and nothing happened, dunno if it was fixed, too. So, again I wasn’t surprised Thursday afternoon when Don retracted whatever he has tweeted before his meeting with the PBA representatives. It was like the irony of it, from a a tweet that felt so real to a statement that felt he was forced to, to say the opposite of his tweets. And after that, everything remains speculation just like it has always been in the past.

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