Mbala and Nar­vasa

Sun.Star Baguio - - PRIME SPORTS - AL MEN­DOZA

AF­TER that heart-stop­ping 79-76 vic­tory by La Salle over Ate­neo on Sun­day, let us go now quickly to Los An­ge­les, CA.

But let me first pause a bit as I’m still catch­ing my breadth fol­low­ing the Green Archers’ tri­umph that halted the Blue Ea­gles’ win­ning streak at 13.

That was an­other thriller to re­mem­ber, just like in their firstround en­counter when Ate­neo es­caped with a 76-75 cliffhanger on Matt Ni­eto’s win­ning two free throws.

An Ate­neo vic­tory on Sun­day would have pushed the Ea­gles to a sweet sweep of 14 games in the two-round elim­i­na­tion se­ries of the UAAP men’s bas­ket­ball tour­na­ment.

But Ben Mbala, the dead­li­est Archer from Cameroon, em­barked on yet an­other mur­der­ous mis­sion, fir­ing 28 points, grab­bing 19 re­bounds and block­ing 6 shots as he al­most sin­gle-hand­edly shoul­dered La Salle home to vic­tory.

As a re­sult, Mbala de­flected Ate­neo’s out­right Fi­nals en­try, paving the way for a Fi­nal 4 match-ups pit­ting La Salle-Adam­son and Ate­neo-Far East­ern Univer­sity on Satur­day and Sun­day, re­spec­tively.

As Nos. 1 & 2 af­ter the elim­i­na­tions, Ate­neo and La Salle need only to win once against their op­po­nents to ad­vance to the best-of-three ti­tle show­down.

Once that hap­pens—and pun­dits say so—Mbala again re­mains the pil­lar in La Salle’s ti­tle-re­ten­tion bid. Stop­ping him is Ate­neo’s only chance to steal the crown.

Mean­while, let’s go back to Los An­ge­les, where the 12 PBA (Philip­pine Bas­ket­ball As­so­ci­a­tion) gov­er­nors are sup­posed to tackle the fate of Com­mis­sioner Chito Nar­vasa and the league’s thrusts in the next sea­son open­ing on Dec. 17.

Ear­lier, seven gov­er­nors of Mer­alco, TNT, NLEx, Phoenix, Rain or Shine, Black­wa­ter and Alaska wanted Nar­vasa out even be­fore his term ex­pires on Dec. 31. But five gov­er­nors of San Miguel Beer, Gine­bra, Star, Glob­alPort and Kia op­posed it, trig­ger­ing a stand­off as eight votes are needed to re­move a com­mis­sioner.

Thus, since Nar­vasa re­mains as com­mis­sioner, how can the 7 gov­er­nors ap­point Rickie San­tos as PBA Of­fi­cer-In-Charge? Non se­quitor (it does not fol­low).

Be­cause Nar­vasa, a lawyer, knows his law, he would heed the law, mean­ing the word of the 7 gov­er­nors means noth­ing? Now, if Nar­vasa re­signs, that’s an­other thing. But will he?

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