The PBA believes putting focus on vaccinating its teams and players will create an easier path towards starting the 46th season this year.
Vice chairman Bobby Rosales said Tuesday, April 20 that inoculation efforts are the league’s main priority after plans for the season to open this month were shelved after COVID-19 cases grew to more or less 10,000 per day.
A bubble remains an option for the league, but is taking into consideration the financial aspects and mental health as seen in last season’s Philippine Cup in Pampanga.
“The first order of the day is for the PBA family to be vaccinated,” said Rosales in a virtual press conference.
“We believe that if everybody has been vaccinated, then it might be easier for the government through the IATF (Inter-Agency Task Force) for the season to open,” added the team governor of the Terrafirma Dyip.
Rosales said supply won’t be an issue for the league since it had secured arrangements with the Philippine Red Cross and commitments from Manny V. Pangilinan, who owns the TNT Tropang Giga, Meralco Bolts and NLEX Road Warriors, and San Miguel Corporation.
The timetable as to when the vaccines will arrive remains a question mark, until PBA commissioner Willie Marcial gets to meet with IATF officials sometime next week.
Rosales, however, clarified that the league has no intention to jump the line.
“We have no intention of jumping the line. We know the priority list established by the government,” he said. “But what we are asking the government also is how we can expedite the vaccination of the whole PBA family.
“If the IATF or the government can gives suggestions on how to expedite the vaccination of the PBA family, then we’ll be more than happy to follow that, even ahead of the arrival of vaccines committed by various groups or if they can assist to bring in the arrival of these vaccines committed by various groups of the PBA,” added Rosales.