PBA fans have seen the last of Tropang TNT’s temperamental import Ivan Johnson on Saturday.
The PBA handed down the lifetime ban on Johnson after the 6-foot-8 import hurled invectives on league commissioner Chito Narvasa just shortly after the American was slapped with a flagrant foul 1 for swiping Meralco forward Brian Faundo in the face during the 4:21 mark of the first half. He was also being fined P250,000.
From the Office of the Commissioner: For addressing the Commissioner with profanities and showing utter (cont) https://t.co/jrScGXQGzo
— PBA (@pbaconnect) February 13, 2016
PBA Media bureau chief Willy Marcial recounted what really transpired during the commotion.
“Malamang (lifetime) ban na iyan kasi kita ko sa bibig niya lumabas yung ‘f…you’ tapos sabay talikod. Para kasing pinapatahimik na siya ni com dahil may sinasabi sa kanya. Eh commissioner’s na yun eh, kataas-taasan na minura mo,” Marcial told media men at the halftime of the Meralco-Talk ‘N Text game at the Philsports Arena.
Johnson became the second import to be banned in close to three years after Salud slapped a lifetime ban on Petron’s (now San Miguel Beer) Renaldo Balkman on March 11, 2013 along with a hefty P250,000 fine for choking teammate Arwind Santos in a game versus Alaska.
The former Atlanta Hawk, who just returned from a one-game suspension for fighting Blackwater big men JP Erram and Frank Golla in a practice game, was ejected from the game.
Early in the second quarter, he was slapped with a technical foul for second motion.
Under league rules, a player who gets a technical foul and a flagrant foul 1 will get an automatic ejection.
Tropang TNT team manager Virgil Villavicencio said the hulking Johnson left the venue in haste with his wife and baby, shortly after being ejected.
Johnson wound up with 9pts, 4 rebs and 1 block in over 16 minutes in what became his last PBA game.
The amiable TNT official though wondered why Narvasa had to get out of the Commissioner’s table’s box, while appearing to point an accusing finger on Johnson.
“I don’t know what he said, but the fact that he pointed and went out of his box, I don’t know what he wanted, eh inawat nga ni Willy eh,” said a dejected Villavincenco.
“You don’t go out of your box and you point to a player? I thought he was pointing on me or (TNT assistant coach) Josh (Reyes) eh. And I think that’s still unbecoming of a commissioner and improper decorum on his side. Because did you ever see (former) commissioner (Chito) Salud go out of his box?” – By Richard Dy