Saving a kid from the brink
By Al S. Mendoza
PHILIPPINE basketball was rocked by an ugly incident this week.
No, it is not a game-fixing scandal. Far from that.
No, it is not a blockbuster trade involving marquee players from San Miguel Beer and Barangay Ginebra. Far from that.
And no, Manny V. Pangilinan is not disbanding his three PBA teams TNT, NLEX and Meralco. Far from that.
The case at hand did not even come from the PBA, the country’s most successful basketball tournament ever since its birth in 1975 that made it Asia’s first play-for-pay league.
Sadly, it came from the collegiate backyard, the least likely place where such a horrible thing could happen.
But it did. And it threw the entire basketball nation in virtual disarray.
And what was the ugly incident again?
John Amores ran amuck, in the process punching four players in succession from the College of St. Benilde: Taine Davis, Jimboy Pasturan, Migs Oczon and Mark Sangco.
Three of them ended in a hospital. One with a crushed kisser, another a black eye, and yet another a head wound that gave him spells of dizziness.
They are mulling filing criminal charges.
Amores is a tough forward of Jose Rizal University, the former Jose Rizal College in Mandaluyong City.
What triggered Amores’ outburst?
He had an altercation with Sangco, which would next see Amores intentionally bump the referee.
One thing led to another—as in an amok losing his mind.
Amores next berated Paul Supan, a top-notch JRU official, before charging into CSB territory to unleash blows against his four victims.
This all happened after CSB had piled up a 71-51 lead over JRU with 3:22 left in the November 8 game in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.
That would mean the game was practically in the bag for the Blazers.
A 20-point lead is simply too large to overhaul with only under four minutes remaining.
Amores must have felt very palpably dejected seeing his team going down the drain?
He lost his focus and turned from good to worst, from boy to beast?
Some more questions.
Why didn’t the bumped referee not act with dispatch, like throwing Amores out of the game outright for roughness and disrespect to a person of authority?
Likewise, why didn’t Supan, a ranking JRU official, not act with authority and impose his own will on his subordinate (Amores) by ejecting him out of the court?
Officials also seemed to have treated Amores with kid gloves.
Before his despicable rampage, Amores had figured in a similar punching incident, hitting the mouth of University of the Philippines’ Mark Belmonte in a JRU-UP game.
Aren’t Belmonte’s parents out to sue Amores for their son’s cracked gums?
Surely, Amores is a troubled child.
Only someone with a twisted mind could do such level of insanity.
He needs help.
Paging Amores’ parents. And JRU officials.
They should act fast to save the kid from the brink.
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