Keifer Ravena’s PBA comeback not in next two conferences

Kiefer Ravena’s PBA comeback won’t be happening in the ongoing Season 47 hostilities.

Mr. Ravena signed a fresh contract with Japanese club Shiga Lakes for the B. League’s 2022-23 B. League season, ending hopes of his return to the NLEX Road Warriors’ fold in the PBA’s next two conferences.

With blessing from the PBA and his mother club NLEX, played for Shiga last year and averaged 13.16 points, 5.84 assists, 2.41 rebounds and 1.48 steals in 56 outings.

After his first season in Japan, he returned home to reunite with the Road Warriors in the ongoing Philippine Cup but failed to strike a deal with the team. Ravena proposed to play one conference but NLEX wanted him for a full year.

PBA commissioner Willie Marcial said won’t stand in the way of Mr. Ravena’s extended Japan stint. However, he stressed the 28-year-old Mr. Ravena will have to abide by the league’s policy on returning players from leagues overseas.

“Based sa policy kailangang makabalik siya within two years. Kapag hindi siya nakabalik within that period, waiting siya for the next three years bago siya makabalik sa PBA,” Mr. Marcial told The STAR.

According to Mr. Marcial, Mr. Ravena has until September of next year to go back to the PBA without having to go through the extra three-year “waiting” period.

Ravena’s status is similar to that of Bobby Ray Parks, who inked a renewal with Nagoya for the next two seasons.

The PBA is also enforcing a policy on eligible college graduates who decide not to apply for the draft and play overseas first.

Mr. Marcial said these players must enter their names within three years of their draft eligibility. Otherwise, they face an additional two-year wait.

This rule applies to Mr. Ravena’s brother Thirdy and La Salle’s Justin Baltazar, who are both in the B. League. — Olmin Leyba