MANILA — Kiefer Ravena’s stellar PBA rookie season is now hanging in the balance.
With Ravena serving an 18-month ban from FIBA for failing a drug test, the question lies on whether the sanction spills to the club leagues.
This is something the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) is trying to ask FIBA.
“We are communicating with FIBA seeking clarification in connection with Mr. Ravena’s playing for the NLEX PBA team. We will write a letter to clarify if we will have Kiefer playing for NLEX in the PBA,” said SBP President Al Panlilio.
However, Panlilio added, “The rules are very clear: all leagues and activities,” which explains why Ravena was suddenly pulled out of the PBA All-Star Iloilo Game on Sunday night.
Panlilio then revealed that the SBP was only notified of the FIBA decision, which was meted on March 19, just last Tuesday, or at the eve of the PBA All-Star Digos Game, when the Gilas pool already confirmed that Ravena will play for the team. He did not play in the Batangas leg of the All-Star Week on Friday.
For the meantime, Ravena will not play for the NLEX Road Warriors when they take on the Blackwater Elite in the resumption of the Commissioner’s Cup at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.
The Ravena ban somehow overshadowed the other main story of the 4:30 p.m. game: the aftermath of the Dave Marcelo-Rabeh Al-Hussaini trade.
In the second game at 7 p.m., San Miguel and Phoenix will collide. PNA-northboundasia.com