Ginebra replaced by Meralco in EASL
MANILA, Philippines—The Meralco Bolts have replaced the Barangay Ginebra Gin Kings as one of the PBA teams to compete in the East Asia Super League (EASL) 2023-24 season.
In a sudden decision, the Bolts are now the second team to represent the PBA in the EASL alongside the TNT Tropang Giga.
Ginebra, which begged off from competition, is not the only team to leave before the EASL season even started following the disbandment of the Bay Area Dragons.
Despite the change, PBA commissioner Willie Marcial said the excitement for the EASL remains high with TNT and Meralco at the forefront.
“Filipino basketball fans can’t wait to see TNT Tropang Giga and Meralco Bolts face off against the champions from other countries during this EASL season. It’s an opportunity to showcase the Filipino brand of play on the international stage,” said Marcial.
“We’re excited to continue our partnership with EASL in growing the sport we love in our region.”
The Bolts will be in Group B alongside Japanese B.League champions Ryukyu Golden Kings, Korean Basketball League (KBL) runners-up Seoul SK Knights and P. LEAGUE+ runners-up New Taipei Kings, who replaced the Dragons.
Meralco will be competing with New Taipei, which most recently acquired the services of former NBA veteran Jeremy Lin, in pool play.
Meanwhile, the Governors’ Cup champion TNT will be in Group A with B.League runner-up Chiba Jets, KBL champions Anyang KGC and P. LEAGUE+ champions Taipei Fubon Braves.
The EASL season begins next month and will run until March of next year.