QC-UP eyes repeat as second FBA season opens Friday
Quezon City-University of the Philippines shoots for a title repeat as the second season of the Filsports Basketball Association tips off on Friday at Marikina Sports Complex.
The Fighting Maroons, who trumped Pampanga-Foton in the Finals of the inaugural season, are hoping to sustain their run with key players still seeing action in the UAAP.
“The first conference went pretty well with QC-UP emerging as champion. And they say the confidence and experience gained by the Fighting Maroons have been a big help in their ongoing campaign in the UAAP. To be honest, we’re flattered about that,” said FBA commissioner Vince Hizon in the weekly PSA Forum on Tuesday at Shakey’s Malate.
Aside from the defending champs, Pampanga-Foton will also return in the grassroots league, together with Marikina-Wangs, Pateros, Malolos-Mighty, and new squads Manila-National U, and two more unnamed teams.
The eight-team tournament will now be telecast on Sports5, with QC-UP battling Manila-NU in the curtain raiser at 4 p.m., followed by the Nic Belasco-mentored Pateros against Marikina-Wangs at 6 p.m.
FBA chief executive officer LJ Serrano said that this year’s edition will follow the double-round eliminations format, with the top four teams advancing to a knockout semifinals. Winners of the Final Four move on to a best-of-three championship series.
Hizon said that the FBA is keeping its goal of discovering and developing grassroots talent, with the league requiring teams to have half of their rosters coming from their respective areas.
“We’re three things: regional, grassroots, and amateur. It’s unique and something which I believe will help Philippine basketball,” he said.
“What makes FBA one of its kind is we make it a point for each team to promote grassroots advocacy,” Serrano added.
Teams could also reinforce their lineup with two former professional players, but only one player could see action on the floor at a time.