Barako Bull Energy Cola forward Rico Maierhofer was slapped with a P20 thousand fine on Friday for blatant misconduct during an elimination round game of the Philippine Basketball Association Governors’ Cup against the San Miguel Beermen on Thursday.
Maierhofer finished a driving layup midway through the third quarter and lost his shoe in the process. He picked it up and resumed defense using the shoe to block San Miguel forward Gabby Espinas’ shot attempt. Laughter erupted among the players and fans following the incident. There was no call made during the play.
“Kung puwede pala yun puwede mo palang hubadin yung t-shirt at hahabulin yung bola masusupalpal yun,” said Beermen head coach Leo Austria during the post-game press conference. Austria believes that there should have been a call made against Maierhofer.
PBA Commissioner Chito Salud said that based on the rules, Maierhofer’s act can be classified as a technical foul.
“Present game rules are broad enough to cover the act of Rico Maierhofer. While not among those acts specifically prohibited by existing rules, said act can be considered to be in breach of the general conduct of games. Hence, it can be classified as a technical foul for using a foreign object as an aid in performing an offensive or defensive move,” said Salud in a statement that gave the final verdict on the incident.
Despite the so-called “shoe-palpal” attempt, the Beermen still beat Barako Bull 116-113.