On August 7 the Philippines will make its final presentation to the FIBA, the International Federation of Basketball, to convince that body to stage the 2018 World Cup in the country. There are reports that Manny V. Pangilinan, chair of Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP), the overall governing body of Philippine basketball, has invited Manny Pacquiao to join the group that will make the presentation to impress the Fiba board.
They might feel insulted instead if they are expected to be swayed by the mere presence of a world boxing champ to stage the next World Cup in the Philippines. They might even develop a bad impression of Philippine basketball when they learn that one with no experience in tournament basketball player, not even in high school intramurals, is allowed to play in the professional league.
Manny is not a member of any governing body of Philippine basketball, not the SBP, not the PBA, not any of the college leagues. He is a player of the PBA team Kia Motors but his performance as a player has been the laughing stock of local basketball aficionados, That was expected as Manny never played in any basketball tournament, not as a college player, not even as a high school player. He has been a professional boxer from his teenage years to the present.
But Pacquiao had a burning desire to be a professional basketball player. Overwhelmed by Manny’s legendary feats in the boxing world, PBA Commissioner Chito Salud let him fulfill his dream when Salud allowed Kia Motors, which had just joined the league, to include Manny in its roster of players, even if he never played in the D league, a requirement for all those who aspire to play in the PBA. Manny Pangilinan expects the members of the FIBA board to be overwhelmed as well.