The National Basketball Association allowed players on the bench not to wear face masks and make contact with players and equipment.
But this will not be the case in the Philippine Basketball Association Philippine Cup’s own “bubble” starting on Oct. 11 in Angeles, Pampanga.
Bases Conversion Development Authority president Vince Dizon said this yesterday after two batches of teams showed up at billeting areas of the 200-hectare Mimosa Golf and Country Club.
“May mga risks sa pagsimula ng bubble. Ang nakikita natin sa NBA ay ang mga players na nasa bench na hindi naka-mask. Dito sa PBA, ang players ay kailangang naka-mask,” said Dizon in a virtual online meeting.
Dizon added that that organizers will be doing something stricter in implementing their health and safety protocols during the bubble.
Players, coaches and staff involved with the NLEX Road Warriors and the Blackwater Elite were the latest to arrive at the Mimosa and went through disinfection, swabbing and other health and safety checks as they passed through the checkpoints.
The BCDA chief put emphasis on tests that will be done during the pre-entry, entry and every three days.
Dizon said a team of doctors will be on hand to do this, checking for symptoms and signs of the flu and fever.
The Magnolia Hotshots were the first to arrive at the Quest Hotel in Mimosa.After that, members of the TnT Tropang Giga, Terra Firma Dyip, Meralco Bolts and the Phoenix Fuel Masters followed suit.
Commissioner Willie Marcial said the protocols may be strict, but these will have to be done to ensure that the games go on smoothly and without a hitch.
This will also mean that players can’t express themselves by doing high-fives or wiping balls with their jerseys.
Everyone inside the “bubble” system will be monitored via a contact-tracing app that can track everyone’s movements during the duration of the restart of the PBA Philippine Cup.