Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Commissioner Willie Marcial said on Thursday that the PBA would not be needing to stage its games in a bubble anymore once all members of the league were vaccinated against Covid-19.
“If there’s a vaccine already, we won’t need a bubble,” said Marcial in Filipino in Thursday’s Tabloid Organization in Philippine Sports forum.
The PBA is willing to procure vaccines for its players, coaches and staff. It also looks on donating vaccines to vulnerable members of society in coordination with local government units (LGUs).
“If the government permits us, we will buy the vaccines. The PBA also wants to donate the vaccines to economically challenged and aged people. We will coordinate with the LGUs to determine those who will receive the vaccines,” Marcial said.
Marcial assured that the PBA won’t jump the line, stressing that it is fully aware that there are more people who need the Covid-19 vaccines more than the league does.
“We will apply and inquire as to how and when can we procure the vaccines, but we can’t go ahead. The frontliners and aged people need it more than the PBA does.”
Once the immunization process is complete, the PBA is looking into the possibility of allowing a live audience of about 40 to 50 percent of the venue’s seating capacity.
“We wish to have fans that will occupy about 40 to 50 percent of the venue’s seating capacity because it’s big for the players.”
But until the vaccine is available, Marcial said the bubble setup will continue.
“We will go with the closed-circuit bubble, home, gym, home.”
The PBA eyes to open its 46th season in April.