Rule changes in PBA could aid PH in adapting to international style, says Guiao

Passing of the flag (0:23)

Passing of the flag (0:23)

Former Gilas Pilipinas head coach Yeng Guiao saw a new aspect of the international game that Philippine basketball could possibly adapt.

Aside from his earlier suggestions of training younger players at the grassroots level and having the national team set up longer camps in Europe for future tournaments, Guiao said that Filipinos could get used to playing with the same physicality that their international counterparts play with if certain rules were changed.

Guiao picked up the idea when his NLEX Road Warriors played in a tune-up game against Korean pro club Jeonju KCC Egis on Friday, which they won 95-86.

"In the PBA, those screens that the Koreans set would have been illegal screens. In FIBA or in the Korean League or wherever, they allow that," he explained in Filipino.

"All PBA teams and PBA players have a hard time setting screens because in the PBA, if you move away just a bit from the screen it's already a foul. If you play out of the country and play the Koreans or when European or African or Middle Eastern teams set screens, a player really gets wiped out and it's still legal. So it's a big adjustment for our national team."

He acknowledged that some rule changes will have to be made by the PBA in order to expose Filipino players to that kind of physicality and officiating.

"I don't know if PBA will be open to the FIBA way of calling fouls or no fouls. The way screens are set are a big advantage if one knows how to leverage them, and it's a big disadvantage if we're not used to it since we'll have a hard time managing around the screens that our opponents set," Guiao said. "That might be one thing also that we can study or talk about."

Guiao saw the European brand of basketball dominate the international stage, which was highly evidenced in the FIBA World Cup as 12 of 16 teams which advanced in the second round are from Europe.

"The FIBA hierarchy is controlled by Europeans, the rules are controlled by the Europeans. The NBA has its own rules. When NBA players walk into a FIBA game, European players have an advantage because they're used to FIBA rules and the NBA players need to make an adjustment," he said.

"Of course, they still don't have the superstars that US has, but if you pit a team of US superstars against the best of Europe, US is still in trouble. So it really says a lot about European basketball," he added.

Guiao further reiterated his point by saying that Filipinos should learn in Europe since the gulf of talent and level of play between the Europeans and the Americans isn't a world of difference anymore.

"I've said before that if you want to get better, the place to go [to] is not [the] US -- go to Spain, go to Serbia, go to Lithuania, go to France. Those are the places to go [to]," he observed.

"It says a lot about basketball in general. The Europeans are taking over in world basketball, partly because of politics. US isolated itself, but what Europe did is to develop their own brand of game outside the NBA brand, and the results are showing that their brand is probably better than the USA brand of basketball," said Guiao.