Things got a bit chippy between Terrence Romeo and Nico Elorde in the fourth quarter of the 2019 PBA Commissioner’s Cup quarterfinal match between the San Miguel Beermen and the NorthPort Batang Pier, Sunday night.
It all started at the 8:48-mark, when Romeo apparently disliked the pesky defense of Elorde while the former waited for the ball to be sent inbounds. A small verbal exchange took place, before referees called them for technical fouls.
Twelve seconds later, with 8:36 on the clock, the referees whistled the league’s former three-time scoring champion for an offensive foul, as they determined he had bumped Elorde while driving to the basket.
But that didn’t stop there. With 8:04 remaining, Romeo incurred another foul, this time on the defensive end when he tried to imitate the smaller Elorde’s peskiness. That prompted the Beermen to pull him out of the game.
Arwind Santos then took Romeo’s place. Shortly after, NorthPort subbed out Elorde and brought in Sol Mercado.
Still, Romeo and Elorde – who are two draft classes apart but met each other in the UAAP before – played down the altercation, saying that it was just all part of the game.
“For me, lahat sa court lang ako. Ako ,wala namang problema sakin eh. Lahat ng nangyayari sa’kin sa court iniiwan ko lahat sa court – kahit na magkatirahan, magkasikuhan or what, no problem,” Romeo said.
“Part ng game yun eh.”
“Part lang naman ng game yun. Alam naman natin na ganoon naman talaga ako dumepensa. So wala, palaban siya, palaban din ako. So walang aatras,” said Elorde, on the other hand.
“Kahit makita niyo naman, ganoon ako dumepensa.”
Now, both cagers are putting the issue behind as well as the game, which SMB won, 98-84. The win also blew the second-seeded Batang Pier’s twice-to-beat edge – an edge they had worked for during the eliminations, where they amassed a 9-2 card.
The do-or-die match will take place this Wednesday.
“Kaya naman kami andito kasi twice to beat kami. May chance pa kami, hindi pa naman tapos ‘yung basketball.
“Kailangan lang maging ready kami kung ano man yung resulta, ganyan… Yung tawagan, basta ready lang kami,” Elorde said.
“Malaki yung naibigay na kumpiyansa sa’min nito para sa Wednesday,” said Romeo, meanwhile.
“Kailangan lang namin mag-focus dun sa mga magaganda naming ginawa. Yung mga lapses namin, kailangan namin i-review.”