By Jonas Terrado
The PBA will continue to hold games in the Governors’ Cup for the duration of the FIBA Asia Cup despite the absence of some of the league’s best players who will represent Gilas Pilipinas for the continental tournament set Aug. 8 to 20 in Lebanon.
Friday and Sunday doubleheaders are slated during the period, with Rain or Shine, Phoenix, and GlobalPort being the most affected as they play two games each minus their star players who were chosen in Gilas’ 12-man roster late Tuesday.
Rain or Shine will be missing Gabe Norwood and Raymond Almazan for its games against Kia on Aug. 13 and TNT KaTropa on Aug. 20, Phoenix plays sans rookie Matthew Wright opposite Blackwater on the 11th and Meralco on the 18th while GlobalPort is without Terrence Romeo versus NLEX on the 13th and Kia on the 20th.
TNT, which has two players named to Gilas in Jayson Castro and freshman Roger Pogoy, will play one game on the 20th against Rain or Shine while San Miguel, Barangay Ginebra San Miguel, Star and Alaska take a break during the period.
The four teams have Gilas players as well in June Mar Fajardo of San Miguel, Japeth Aguilar of Ginebra, Jio Jalalon of Star, and Calvin Abueva and Carl Bryan Cruz of Alaska.
Fil-German Christian Standhardinger, listed as a naturalized owing to strict FIBA rules, is the other player named on the roster.
Meralco, Kia, Blackwater and NLEX, which have no players on the final 12, will have a busy schedule during the tournament.
Meralco battles Kia (Aug. 11) and Phoenix (Aug. 18), Kia plays Meralco (Aug. 11), Rain or Shine (Aug. 13) and GlobalPort (Aug. 20), Blackwater takes on Phoenix (Aug. 11) and NLEX (Aug. 18) and NLEX meets GlobalPort (Aug. 13) and Blackwater (Aug. 18).
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