Palou: Turning pro will affect PVL players

The Premier Volleyball League will discuss to the league members the details of the joint resolution between the Games and Amusement Board (GAB) and the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) which sets the parameters of identifying the professional and amateur ranks.

Sports Vision president Ricky Palou said the decision to turn pro doesn’t depend on the organizers alone.

“We will need to get the approval of our member-teams,” Palou said. “Some of our teams still engage the services of collegiate players to play for them.”

“Turning pro will definitely affect them as university/college leagues do not allow professional players to play in their respective leagues.”

Palou added it will also be complicated if collegiate players are allowed to obtain special licenses just to play in the league. Some collegiate players competing in the PVL also play in the UAAP and the NCAA.

“The school leagues will not allow their players to play in their respective leagues even with a special license. They will reason out that players who participate in professional leagues will also have an undue advantage over those that do not play in the pro league,” said Palou.

The joint resolution sets the guidelines to draw the line between professional and amateur athletes. Under it, professional sports or competitions refer to individual or team sports, games, contests, bouts and tournaments where the participating athletes are paid sums of money or other forms of compensation as salary or prizes.

In the case of the PVL, the league has been holding three-conference tournaments per season composed of teams with professional and collegiate athletes for more than a decade.

In Tuesday’s virtual Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum, GAB chairman Baham Mitra reiterated the agency is not forcing leagues to turn pros.

“We’re not a revenue-generating agency. We’re just following our mandate. We don’t meddle; we only step in when needed,” Mitra said.

Mitra believes it would help speed up the resumption of volleyball competitions since only professional sports like basketball, boxing, football and 3x3 are only allowed at the moment during quarantine.

“We have to understand where the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force) is coming from. Ang dami nilang health concerns. Kailangang may isang government agency na aalalay. This is what we’re doing now. So that we can work together,” said Mitra.