Following the Renaldo Balkman saga, San Miguel Corporation (SMC) is re-evaluating its participation in the country’s no.1 professional basketball league. SMC currently has three teams in the PBA; Petron Blaze Boosters, the defending Commissioner’s Cup champ San Mig Coffee Mixers, and the crowd favorite Barangay Ginebra Kings. SMC is one of the league’s pioneers and if it withdraws from the league, it will leave a big void that could spell the end of Asia’s first play for pay basketball league. Here is a statement from SMC (taken from interaktv):
San Miguel Corporation would like to apologize to basketball fans and the Philippine Basketball Association, for the unsportsmanlike conduct shown by its import, Renaldo Balkman, last Friday, March 8. We accept the decision to ban Mr. Balkman for life from the league.
We do not condone his actions. The mandate of our basketball operations has always been to entertain basketball fans and foster camaraderie and a spirit of healthy competition. We pride ourselves in having great teams who serve as good role models to the youth and community.
Unfortunately, the incident has been blown out of proportion and has damaged our good name. Already, news of the incident has spread throughout the country and overseas through traditional and online media.
Our reputation is of utmost importance to us because we have worked hard to cultivate this good name through the decades. But it takes only one unfortunate incident like this to undo all our efforts.
As such, given the possible long-term effect of this incident to the San Miguel organization’s image, and in consideration of our need to preserve our good reputation, Management has decided to re-evaluate the company’s continuing participation in the PBA.
Moving forward, we believe sports is a pillar of Philippine society and we will continue to support it and Filipino athletes in general in meaningful ways in and out of the PBA.
The Petron Blaze Boosters (PBB) is the team of Cebuano rookie June Mar Fajardo. Last friday in their match against Alaska Aces, PBB import Renaldo Balkman went bonkers as he pushed an assistant coach and two teammates before ending up choking Arwind Santos in national TV. The sad incident prompted Commissioner Chito Salud to fine the former NBA first round pick 250,000 pesos and banned him from the PBA for life. SMC felt that the incident somehow tarnished their name and made them think about their future in the league and as one of the biggest basketball sponsors in the country.
caloycomment: What’s next in the Petronovela?
- PBA: Renaldo Balkman gets banned for life (caloysports.wordpress.com)
- Renaldo Balkman Choked A Teammate Today (deadspin.com)
- WATCH: Ex-Knick player Renaldo Balkman chokes teammate, pushes coach and referees (pix11.com)
- Former NBA player Renaldo Balkman chokes teammate during game (tracking.si.com)