Shortly after helping his team record the most lopsided win this conference, a 106-77 bashing of the Air 21 Express on Wednesday night, Meralco import Mario West caused a commotion that overshadowed the game.
As soon as the final buzzer sounded, West rushed to the Air 21 locker room to confront Ogie Menor, who was ejected in the third quarter for his hard foul on the import.
Television cameras caught West having to be physically dragged away from the Air 21 locker room by teammates.
Unable to find Menor inside the locker room, West trained his sights on Express guard Wynne Arboleda, who said he tried to ask the import to leave his team’s dressing area.
“Nagkatulakan pa kami eh, kasi siya naman yung nauna,” Arboleda told InterAKTV. “Hinahanap niya si Ogie, tapos nakita niyang wala. Nung mayroon nang mga umaawat, tinulak niya ako, kaya ako gumanti rin ako ng tulak.”
Meralco Bolts coach Ryan Gregorio and team manager Virgil Villavicencio said West went to the dugout looking for Menor to apologize.
“He’s a very friendly import,” said Gregorio after the game. “He went there to try to shake the hand of Ogie.”
“He was there looking for Menor and wanted to shake his hand. Mario even apologized to us, so we believe everything is OK there,” added Villavicencio.
Arboleda, however, didn’t buy the team officials’ explanation.
“Iba yung tingin nung import nu’ng pumasok siya sa dugout. I don’t think mag-aapologize siya. Tumakbo siya papasok then nilundag niya pa yung bakal na nagdi-divide sa teams,” said Arboleda.
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