PBA Commissioner Leo Prieto fined Crispa and Toyota P5,000 each for their post-game rumble in the opener of the 1977 PBA season, an incident that prompted Metrocom officials to arrest players from both teams.
Crispa, Toyota fined P5,000
By Al Mendoza
Published Friday April 22, 1977
Philippine Basketball Association Commissioner Leo Prieto fined Toyota and Crispa P5,000 each yesterday for their players' involvement in last Sunday's post-game rumble at the Araneta Coliseum.
PBA legal counsel Rodrigo Salud said the fines are appealable within 72 hours.
Toyota coach Dante Silverio was slapped a fine of P1,000 after he was found guilty of cussing a referee following a technical foul he got from referee Estefanio Bernos in the dying seconds of the Toyota-Crispa match Sunday.
Crispa manager Danny Floro said last night that he will appeal the fine imposed on him by Prieto. “Why did he (Prieto) fine my team and Toyota with the same amount of P5,000,” Floro asked.
Floro contended that one team should have been slapped a bigger fine. “People might think that both parties were guilty,” Floro added.
Floro said he will file today his written appeal to Prieto.
Prieto furnished the Games and Amusements Board, Toyota and Crispa with copies of his findings on the rumble that prompted the Metrocom to arrest and detain all Toyota and Crispa players Monday night at Fort Bonifacio.
Floro, when asked to comment on rumors being floated around that Crispa players would be reverted to amateurs, said: “I am willing to have my players return to the amateur fold for the sake of the national interest.” He added: “I will try to convince my players to become amateurs again.”
Floro said that he has not talked with Lito Puyat, president of the Basketball Association of the Philippines and of FIBA, the matter regarding amateurs.
Professional players can now revert to amateurs following a recent directive from the FIBA, the international body governing amateur basketball, that pro cagers from the Philippines can become amateurs purposely for the coming world basketball championships slated next year.
Prieto, in his findings, said he was able to pinpoint the person who instigated the rumble that left many injured, including a lady ringside spectator who was hit on the right waist by an empty soft drink bottle hurled from the bleachers.
According to Salud, the PBA commissioner admitted responsibility over the rumble that occurred last Sunday.
Salud said the commissioner thought it was his duty to have the teams go out separately from the court after the game.
“But he was thrown off guard when some players from both sides shook hands right after the game, thus, allowing both teams to head for their respective dugouts together,” Salud said.
Salud said he had given Brig. Gen. Prospero Olivas, Metrocom commander, a transmittal letter that contained the findings of Prieto.