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Under-fire Mark Barroca insists: ‘Mainit lang yung laban kanina’

Mark Barroca is now under scrutiny following his apparent low blow to Aces guard Chris Banchero, late in Game Four of their 2018 PBA Governors’ Cup Finals against the Magnolia Hotshots, Wednesday night at the SMART Araneta Coliseum.

The match halted with 2:31 remaining in the fourth quarter, since Banchero was on the ground and in pain – the result of Barroca’s apparent punch to the groin as per the numerous replays that rolled out.

The Aces still won, 90-76, but the incident left Alaska head coach Alex Compton infuriated, as the referees made no calls.

“If we’re gonna get punched multiple times and there aren’t calls or suspensions, I’ve got a problem,” the outspoken mentor stressed. “Somebody punched Chris in the testicles. At what point is it gonna get called?

“I’m not happy about that one bit. It’s dirty basketball.”

League commissioner Willie Marcial then called Barroca moments after the match, seemingly regarding the incident. The veteran point guard was accompanied by Magnolia team governor Rene Pardo.

“Sabi lang ni comm na ‘wag daw masyado, ‘di raw maganda na masyadong madiin,” Barroca said.

As for the apparent low blow, the seven-year pro out of the Far Eastern University Tamaraws program said that he never intended the hit.

“Mainit lang yung laban kanina,” he said. “‘Di pagkakaintindihan na nangyari yun, ‘di naman sa inano ko yung insidente na yun, pero game yun eh.

“‘Di maiiwasan din.”

Barroca even made it known that he and Banchero are actually friends, and that their rivalry is just within the four lines of the basketball court.

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“Kami ni Banchero, magkaibigan naman kami,” shared the 32-year-old from Zamboanga City. “Kinongrats ko pa nga siya eh. [Sabi ko pa nga] Nice game. Ganun talaga sa loob, mag-aaway, pero sa labas magkakaibigan kami.”

Asked if he will face any sanctions, such as fines or suspensions, Barroca said he won’t: “Wala namang napag-usapang ganun.”

Written By

Oftentimes on the sidelines. Forever a student of the game. Morayta-bred.

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