The alleged ‘tug-of-war’ between TNT and Terrafirma for the services of Joseph Gabayni ended up with no winners.
The 14th overall pick in the 2017 PBA Rookie Draft is currently playing for MPBL team Bulacan.
In fact, he has been there since April 14 — a full month before the PBA on Tour began.
That is why Terrafirma head coach Johnedel Cardel was left scratching his head when TNT also added Gabayni to their pool of players for the preseason tournament.
“Tinanong ko rin yung manager niya (Ed Ponceja) kung totoo ba ‘to, sabi naman nila hindi at may kontrata pa siya sa MPBL,” said Cardel.
“Maganda yung kontrata niya dun pero kung babalik pa siya sa PBA, sa amin pa rin siya.”
The burly 6-foot-5 big man out of Lyceum of the Philippines University is currently on a tear for the Kuyas, averaging 14.6 points and 10.9 rebounds.
Usually, an MPBL contract ends until a team is out of the running for the national championship.
The regular season ends in October while the playoffs usually finish in December.
And if Gabayni ends up returning to the PBA, Cardel stressed that any interested takers will have to go through them as he will only be an unrestricted free agent next year.
Cardel though could not help but lament that Gabayni is not with the depleted Dyip right now.
“Sana gamit siya dito kasi siya lang ang big man namin na sumi-seal sa ilalim. Nakita mo naman sampung player lang ang naglalaro sa akin dahil may mga injury pa,” he rued as Terrafirma has yet to win in two games.