PBA vows to be competitive in EASL, plans to send top teams
MANILA, Philippines—The PBA will have a hefty list of options on which teams to send to the inaugural season of the East Asia Super League that will begin in October next year.
League chairman Ricky Vargas said they will choose two teams from the top four clubs of the previous season to represent the PBA in the continental tournament.
Vargas added that the simplest way of choosing the two teams will be to draw lots or to create two new rosters comprised of players from the four clubs.
There’s also the possibility of sending Gilas Pilipinas to the tournament.
“We want to be competitive and we will be competitive and that’s that’s how we look at it,” said Vargas in a press conference Thursday.
The PBA, along with the other major Asian basketball associations, officially formalized their partnership with the EASL on Wednesday finalizing a pan-regional tournament that consists of a home-and-away format.
Japan’s B.League, the Korean Basketball League, and Taiwan’s P.League+, as well as top teams from Hong Kong and Macau also made the deal with the EASL.
“It’s important for us to open up relationships and cooperation with leagues in the region,” said Vargas. “This gives us the opportunity to do so. It’s an opportunity to play with the best talents and teams in the region.”
PBA Commissioner Willie Marcial said that the two PBA teams that will play in the EASL will also have one or two imports bolstering the rosters, similar to the sides that played in the league’s previous competitions in Macau.
The PBA and the EASL have been working together for nearly three years with NLEX and Blackwater playing in the Summer Super 8 in Macau in 2018.
It was in 2019 that the league’s heavyweights San Miguel and TNT, along with Blackwater, played in the continental tiff for the Terrific 12.