PDA

View Full Version : Metroball (MBA News/Articles)



Toto Battung
04-09-2009, 12:34 PM
Knights trample Blades, 84-71
Manila Bulletin
October 10, 1999

San Juan Knights, riding high on a robust defense, put away Batangas' deadly Blades with a scorching run as early as the second quarter on the way to an 84-71 victory in Game 3 of their MBA quarterfinals showdown last night at the Philsports Arena.
Scoring heavily in transition, the Knights built as many as a 24-point lead then scuttled every Batangas attempt to close in with the help of manmountain Bonel Balingit to clinch their best-of-three duel two games to one, and join early qualifiers Manila and Pasig-Rizal in the semifinals of the Northern Conference which gets underway next weekend.
The Knights will be facing the Pirates, who finished the regular season with a 23-7 card, in a best of five duel starting at the Pasig Sports Center.
Showing no effects of their 78-92 game 2 loss to the same team in Lipa last Wednesday, the Knights pulled away in the second quarter, 32-15, with the help of a 14-to-nothing run and steadily pulled away behind the guns of Gherome Ejercito and Chris Calaguio who finished with 21 and 14 points respectivley.
Although the Blades managed to get within 12 points, 79-67, with less than four minutes remaining, San Juan merely went to Balingit in the middle to crush whatever hopes the Blades had of pulling the rug from under their feet as the 6-foot-9 behemoth rattled off the last seven of his 13 points.

pepman
06-06-2009, 12:52 PM
FORMER PBA CAGERS JOIN METROBALL

Manila, Jan. 26, 1998 - Four former Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) players have joined the Manila Metrostars team of the soon-to-be-launched Metropolitan Basketball Association (MBA or Metroball).

Ruben de la Rosa, Freche Ang, Peter Martin and Nandy Garcia were among seven players signed up by the Manila franchise yesterday. The league opens March 7 in Urdaneta, Pangasinan.

Also enlisted were former FEU standout Nestor Echano, AMA Computer College and Stag team member Chito Victolero and UP star Jasper Javier.

De la Rosa and Ang were members of the Purefoods team that won the All-Filipino last year. Martin was at various times with Pop Cola, Mobiline and Pepsi, while Garcia was with Alaska.

The first recruit was Rommel Adducul. Coach of the team is Ricky Dandan. The Manila Metrostars team is owned by Leandro Bantug and Loui Chuidian.

pepman
06-09-2009, 12:24 PM
NEWSFLASH

PBA IS CHALLENGED BY NEW MBA CLUB

Manila, Dec. 2, 1997 - A new basketball club in the Philippines aimed to play basketball on television is called the Metropolitan Basketball Association (MBA), with teams owned by Filipino politicians and businessmen.

The team owners are Pangasinan Gov Oscar Orbos, Rep of Davao del Norte, Rodolfo del Rosario, former Marcos crony Danding Cojuangco, Jr., Antonio Gonzales of Mimosa Estates, Bert Lina of Federal Express, Noel Carino of Fil-Estateland Inc., Philip Lhuillier of famed pawnshop chain, former PBA player Chito Loyzaga and University of Iloilo president Robert Lopez Puckett.

The 12 teams will play for the MBA's inaugural season which opens on March 7, 1998 over UHF Channel 23 and the Sarimanok Network of ABS-CBN. The teams will represent Metro Manila, Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. The players would come from collegiate ranks.

The new club is similar to the National Basketball Association (NBA) of the US where states battle for the crown.

pepman
06-09-2009, 12:25 PM
THE NEW MBA TV ANCHOR TEAM

Manila, March 25, 1998 - ABS-CBN has recruited a batch of veterans forming the on-air coverage team for the Metropolitan Basketball Asssociation games.

Top sportscaster Sev Sarmenta with Bill Velasco and Bob Novales are the anchors. Sarmenta has covered major sports events like the Olympics, Asian Games, PBA and others, Velasco was anchorman for the Atlanta Olympics, the SEA Games and over 50 world boxing championships. Novales' credits inlcude stints in PBA Radio Panel and anchor for local and international sports events.

In-depth analysis of the MBA games is provided by former Ateneo UAAP star Danny Francisco, PBA sportscaster Butch Maniego and former PBA coach Chot Reyes.

Interviewers include former tennis champ and Sports Unlimited host Dyan Castillejo, Studio 23 sportscaster Joseph Barrios, SNN Desk Editor Alex Santos, SNN reporter Mico Halili and former Sky News reporter Pia Gonzales.

The MBA games are aired live on Studio 23 and simulcasted on the Sarimanok News Network.

pepman
06-09-2009, 12:26 PM
PBA EXPANDS, ACCEPTS NEW MBA AS A
CHALLENGE

Manila, Feb. 16, 1998 - The Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) accepts the new Metropolitan Basketball Association (MBA) as both a threat and an opportunity. This was intimated by La Tondena President Bernabe Navarro who is also the newly elected chairman of the PBA.

He further stated that a new member will be added next year increasing the number of PBA teams to nine. Tanduay is likely the new member. Further developments also revealed that ticket gate prices are not increased and there will be nine provincial games in seven venues.

Jun Bernardino remained as the PBA Commissioner and Butch Cleofe also stayed as board secretary.

pepman
06-09-2009, 12:27 PM
IBC-13 TO AIR MBA GAMES ON PBA DAYS

Manila, March 8, 1998 - It is a first on Philippine TV, and could be good or bad for basketball fans and for the sport.

ABS-CBN and IBC-13 have signed a contract for a joint telecast of all MBA games, starting with the kick-off rites in Lingayen, beamed live nationwide.

The memorandum of agreement, signed for ABS-CBN by assistant general manager Rolando Cruz and for IBC by its president, Gen. Amylene Temple.

Channel 13 airs PBA games on the 5 p.m.-12 p.m. slot bought by Vintage Promotions through a five-year blocktime sales agreement which gives the government-sequestered station P11 million per month.

Sports columnist Beth Celis said the four-hour, thrice weekly MBA slot on Channel 13 would mean that "Viewers of Channel 13 will have basketball coming out of their ears on Tuesdays, Fridays and Sundays; this may eventually turn off viewers and both leagues may suffer."

PBA commissioner Jun Bernardino, however, welcomed the coming of the MBA because the "biggest beneficiaries will be the players, who will use the MBA as a spring board to the PBA, where their skills will be honed."

"Now, whether the move to air the MBA games on the PBA's home station is unethical or immoral, I don't know," Bernardino said. "But if we talk of legality, it seems that the move was legal, because they were able to do it."

pepman
06-09-2009, 12:29 PM
MBA-DAVAO EAGLES FORM
SOLID TEAM

Davao City, March 9, 1998 - The DAVAO Eagles coached by Francis Rodriguez is all set to launch in the new MBA (Metropolitan Basketball Association).

The Eagles composing mostly of former San Sebastian Stags have Eugene Quilban as ace player and who was formerly with Pop Cola and Pepsi (PBA). Other players are Cris Bade and Allan Garridon formerly of Formula Shell (PBA), and Toying Teves formerly of Sta Lucia Realty (PBA). Ready to lend support are former PBL top players Lou Regidor, Armoni Llagas, Ariel Tizon, Aldrin Barola and former UE Warriors Joemar Tierra and Rafael Rodriguez. Former Ginebra cager Pete Aguilar is also expected to be with the team.

The Metropolitan Basketball Association was to launch March 7, 1998.

pepman
06-09-2009, 12:32 PM
PRESIDENTS, PIRATES, NUGGETS PLAY IN MBA

Manila, Feb. 9, 1998 - The Metropolitan Basketball Association will soon introduce new team names to Philippine sports fans. The names chosen by the teams reflect local peculiarities of the town, city or province a team represents.

The Davao Eagles comes from the monkey-eating eagle found in Mount Apo; Laguna Lakers is taken from Laguna's famous lake, Cebu Gems is named after the jewelry pawned with the pawnshops of the Lhuillier family that owns the team.

The Iloilo Volts is owned by a power company Solar Electric. Cagayan de Oro Nuggets play for a place with gold mines. Negros Slashers are named after the cockfighting and sugar industries. Pampanga's team is called Dragons, short for Mondragon, the company that owns the team and much of Clark Field.

Pangasinan Presidents play for the province of President Ramos and presidential bet Jose de Venecia. Batangas Blades is a team from a province famous for "balisong" or switchblades. Pasig Blue Pirates, from the pirates that roam the Pasig River.

From Metro Manila, region of stars in show business and politics, comes the team Metrostars, while the Marlins represent the Southern Cotabato, Saranggani and General Santos (SOCSARGEN) region, where marlins are caught commercially.

pepman
06-12-2009, 02:45 PM
BALLESTEROS SIGNS P8-M DEAL WITH METROBALL TEAM

Manila, June 13, 1998 - The Metropolitan Basketball Association team the Presidents signed up former Formula Shell forward Ernesto "Estong" Ballesteros to a 3-year contract which sources told Malaya sports reporters could probably be worth P8 million.

The 6-foot-5 Ballesteros, a former UST Growling Tiger, was on the injury list, then the reserve list, and finally turned into an unrestricted agent shortly before the signing.

Despite offers from several PBA teams, Ballesteros opted for the MBA, saying it is a big opportunity for him. "I am ready to give my all to prove worthy of the trust and confidence given me by the management of the Pangasinan Presidents," he said.

Ballesteros is expected to liven up Pangasinan's weak lineup, which has seen the team lose its last three games for the MBA's worst win-loss card of 4 wins and 8 losses.

Ballesteros will see action with his new team for the first time Sunday, when the Presidents tackle the Laguna Lakers in San Fernando, Pampanga.

pepman
06-12-2009, 02:46 PM
CHITO LOYZAGA TO COACH PANGASINAN PRESIDENTS

Davao City, June 6, 1998 - Sources from within the team have leaked to newsmen the possibility that former pro-basketball player Chito Loyzaga will be more than co-owner of the Presidents when the team meets the Manila Metrostars in the Metropolitan Basketball Association's games in Davao.

Loyzaga is reported to have been helping call the shots for the Pangasinan team, which has lost its last three games to land second from the last in the northern conference, with a 4-7 win-loss card.

Such a dismal showing means the Presidents might miss the bus and not be in the four-team conference semis.

The 6-foot-4 Loyzaga was not available for comment, but basketball circles are rife with rumors that Presidents head coach Dong Vergeire was not very pleased with Loyzaga's decision to be more actively involved in the coaching side of the team's management.

pepman
06-12-2009, 02:58 PM
METROBALL RUMBLE: COACH, 9 PLAYERS FINED

Manila, July 1, 1998 - The Metropolitan Basketball Association fined nine players and one coach a total of P50,000 for involvement in the brawl that marred the game between Laguna and Cagayan de Oro last Saturday in Sta. Cruz, Laguna.

Nugget Peter Naron and Laker Melvin Taguines started the fight, which prompted Cagayan de Oro coach Boyzie Zamar to enter the court with his team and joined the scuffle. The two players were fined P5,000 each.

Coach Zamar's fine of P12,000 was for: leading his players into the court (P10,000), accosting the referees after the game when they are supposed to go straight to their dugout (P1,000) and P1,000 for unsportsmanlike conduct prior to the incident.

Fine P6,000 each were Cagayan's Eric de la Cuesta and Jarlan Yu and Laguna's Ramon Regidor, for entering the court from the bench and joining the fracas.

Two players -- Manny Victorino and Vilmer Banares -- both of Cagayan, were fined P4,000 each.

In handing out the sanctions, MBA Commissioner Ramon Fernandez said he wanted to send the message to everybody that players and team officials have no business entering the court in such situations.

The MBA decided to forego suspensions because the MBA is in the middle of elimination games.

pepman
06-12-2009, 03:03 PM
NEWSFLASH

MBA BUY-OUT DONE, GAMES RESUME NEXT WEEK

Manila, Aug. 13, 1998 - The on-again, off-again Metropolitan Basketball League buy-out is on again, and apparently nearing conclusion.

MBA commissioner Ramon Fernandez announced that the league's unfinished elimination round will resume August 19, and the semi-finals will begin August 22.

The team owners' buy-out of Metroball shares were reportedly concluded Tuesday.

ABS-CBN will pour a lot of technical resources in ensuring the success of the semi-final games' coverage, Fernandez said. Both the Visayas and Luzon games, played the same day, will be aired live one after the other, and would be seen nationwide on ABS-CBN's cable channels.

Fernandez also disclosed that the MBA teams have acquired 10 new players, but he identified only two, both from the defunct Wilkins Distilled Water team of the PBL. Celedon Camaso will join the Manila Metrostars, while Jun Paguinto will wear the Davao Eagles jersey. The rest of the new faces will be signing soon, pending clearances from their mother units.

A more formal, final and official announcement on the Metroball's buy-out scheme is expected in a few days from the teams' lawyers.

pepman
06-12-2009, 03:04 PM
MONEY SCANDAL ROCKS METROBALL

Manila, August 1, 1998 - Owners of all the 12 teams of the Metropolitan Basketball Association are locked in a big fight with Metroball, franchise owner of the league, over money matters involving financial support and shares of gate receipts.

"We paid out almost P30 million for our franchise fee when we started. We were promised shares of gate receipts even before the league started, but we have yet to receive a single centavo from Metroball," said on MBA team owner.

Huge expenditures for team owners include P12 million a month in salaries of players and other operational expenses, such as travels to the Southern Philippines for Luzon-based teams and travels to Luzon for the teams based in Visayas-Mindanao.

The 12 team owners are Tim Orbos of Pangasinan Presidents, Robert Puckett of Iloilo Volts, Santi Araneta of Batangas Blades, Pilar de Ayala of Negros Slashers, Mike Toledo of Pasig Blue Pirates, Jose Miguel A. Chuidian of Manila Metrostars, Eric Canoy of Cagayan de Oro Nuggets, Anthony del Rosario of Davao Eagles, Jose Antonio S. Gonzales II of Pampanga Dragons, Jean Henri Lhuillier of Cebu Gems, Ruben D. Solon of Socsargen Marlins and Alberto Lina of Laguna Lakers.

The MBA is composed of three major factions--the 12 team owners, Metroball and ABS-CBN Channel 2. According to the Philippine Daily Inquirer, the 12 team owners had no working relations with Channel 2 but in the recent team owner-Metroball confrontations that rocked the league, the 12 teams owners seemed to have forged an alliance with Channel 2. Left out in the cold, seemingly, is Metroball.

''We are the products here but we have not been given any share from the proceeds of the league,'' said the MBA official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. ''Metroball has been running the league, but then, how about the returns due us? We are spending and spending, but it is Metroball which has been reaping and reaping the dividends.''

Metroball had reportedly a capitalization of only P1 million. But shares have risen to P100,000 each share.

pepman
06-12-2009, 03:09 PM
NEWSFLASH

MBA PLANS 10,000-SEAT COLISEUMS

Manila, Sept. 18, 1998 - If the new Metropolitan Basketball Asssociation have their way, basketball fans in major cities, towns and provincial capitals could be watching MBA games inthe luxury and comfort of giant, air-conditioned coliseums with first class amenities.

Rey Gascon, founding father of the fledgling league, revealed that the MBA has linked up with Canadian businessmen to build the 10,000-seat sports arenas in every major Philippine city and town where the MBA holds its games.

The Canadian group, according to Gascon, partly owns the Toronto Raptors in the National Basketball Association. One of them, he said, is a good friend who have seen how popular the league has become nationwide, despite the sadly deplorable conditions of the playing venues in the countryside.

The group's offer is on a build-operatetransfer scheme, making it easy for the team owners to accept the idea.

At present, the league holds its games mostly in school gyms which meet the MBA requirements. Experience have shown however that some .of the venuees could not accomodate the crowds who want to watch the games. Some of the fans have to be turned away often, while those lucky enough to get in have to endure the sweltering heat.

"This should be a welcome development not only for the teams but also for the fans," MBA Commissioner Mon Femandez said. "I just hope that it will push through."

Davao team owner Anthony del Rosario, newly-elected president of the Metropolitan Regional Basketball Association, Inc. (MRBI) which owns the controlling interest in the league, said the plan would augur well for the development of Philippine basketball in general.

A three-hectare lot worth P20 million has already been donated by philanthropist and businessman Bebot Uy to the Eagles to house a brand new superdome for Davao.

pepman
06-12-2009, 03:09 PM
FOUR NEW TEAMS JOIN MBA

Clark Field, Pampanga, Oct. 23, 1998 - Metropolitan Basketball Association owners have agreed to accept four new teams in 1999 and raise the annual team salary cap from P7 to P8.5 million.

In a meeting by MBA officials, team owners and ABS-CBN, the league unanimously agreed to accept four expansion teams for next season, which is set to start on the third week of January in Cebu, to coincide with the Sinulog Festival in Cebu.

Of the 40 teams reported to be interested in joining the community-based league, only San Juan, Surigao, Nueva Ecija and Ilocos Norte are reportedly being seriously considered.

The San Juan team is supported by Mayor Jinggoy Estrada, while the three others are likewise backstopped by prominent clans involved in politics and business.

In the same meeting, team owners and officials agreed to raise the annual team salary cap to P8.5 million although some team owners are still trying to jack it up to P10 million.

"It was a unanimous decision to increase the salary cap to P8.5 million, with several owners trying to raise it to P10 million. This move was made because we want more marquee players from college and the provinces to join and increase the competitiveness of each team," said Gonzalez.

Several MBA teams are reportedly set to acquire top cagers from the PBL and the PBA at the end of the year.

MBA commissioner Ramon Fernandez said that each team will be limited to only two Fil-Americans beginning next year to give more opportunities to home-grown talents.

pepman
06-12-2009, 03:11 PM
MBA Finals

MBA FINALS: NEGROS OVER DAGUPAN IN OVERTIME

Bacolod City, Oct. 18, 1998 - The Negros Slashers cut down the Pampanga Dragons, 95-94, in the first game of the Metropolitan Basketball Association's national finals at the University of St. La Salle gym.

Johnedel Cardel scored with five seconds left in overtime, completing the Slashers' difficult climb from 12 points down in the final quarter. The hometown crowd, currently celebrating the Masskara festival, was driven into a frenzy.

''The Dragons are really strong. It's a good thing that we were able to keep up with them in the final quarter,'' said Negros coach Jun Noel. ''I give it to the boys. They played with a lot of determination and big heart.''

Game Two of the best-of-seven series will be held at the same venue today. After a two-day rest, the MBA finals will move to Pampanga for Games 3, 4 and 5 starting Wednesday.


MBA FINALS: DRAGONS OVER SLASHERS FOR 1-1 TIE

Bacolod City, Oct. 19, 1998 - The Pampanga Dragons were saved yesterday from a second defeat in the Metropolitan Basketball Association's National Finals by Ato Morano, who scored 26 points, including four three-pointers for a final score of 92-86 at the University of St. La Salle gym.

With the best-of-seven finals tally standing at one-all, the MBA National Finals moves over to San Fernando, Pampanga for the next three games starting Wednesday.

The partisan home crowd failed to intimidate the Dragons as they sprinted to an early 13-point lead in the first quarter. In the second quarter, the Pampanga team strengthened its lead to as high as 24 points, at 54-30, before settling for 58-39 at halftime.

''I don't want to think of a sweep and ending the series at home,'' said Pampanga coach Aric del Rosario. ''The series will return here (Bacolod). Knock on wood.''

The Negrenses agree. Despite their homecourt defeat, Negros coach Jun Noel said they will try to bring back the series to Bacolod.

MBA FINALS: DRAGONS WIN GAME 3

San Fernando, Pampanga, Oct. 22, 1998 - The Pampanga Dragons pulled off a 99-91 victory over the Negros Slashers last night in Game 3 of he Metropolitan Basketball Association National Finals held at the Pampanga Convention Center.

It was a closely fought game during the first two quarters as the Dragons and the Slashers battled to nine deadlocks and six lead changes before the Pampanga boys moved in to take a 7-point lead at halftime, 57-50.

But what spelled the difference for the Dragons was their 7-0 drive in the final two minutes of the game, capped by a 3-pointer.

Long David scored 21 points, including 16 in the first half and grabbed eight rebounds to lead Pampanga but it was the Dragons' overall hatchet job on Slashers center Jack Tanuan and playmaker Maui Huelar that did the job of giving the hosts a victory at home.

Negros center Tanuan could make no more than six points the whole evening while Huelar was limited to 11 in the face of very tight guarding by the Dragons on two of Negros' leading scorers.

"Sabi ko sa mga bata, malimitahan lang natin ang dalawang scorer nila, may pag-asa tayo," said Pampanga coach Aric del Rosario.

Asked on whether he could sweep the series at home, he remarked: "Kung makakaya, gagawin natin. Mahirap nang bumalik pa doon sa Bacolod. Sana huwag na."

Games 4 and 5 of the title playoffs will be held in San Fernando again this weekend, both starting at 4 o'clock.

pepman
06-12-2009, 03:11 PM
MANILA HONORS MBA HOME TEAM

Manila, Oct. 26, 1998 - Although the Manila Metrostars did not land in the national finals of the Metropolitan Basketball Association's national championship derby, the team nevertheless cops a grand prize when it gets officially honored by the City of Manila.

Manila Mayor Lito Atienza will meet with the team on behalf of the people of Manila "to express the city's deepest gratitude to the Metrostars for serving as an inspiration to the youth."

The Metrostars, hounded by injuries, reached the Northern Conference finals but lost to the Pampanga Dragons.

Metrostars president Ramon Tuason said he will take the opportunity to ask the city government for assistance in looking for a permanent homecourt for the team.

Team owner Louie Chuidian said Metrostars officials will ask Atienza for the possible use of the San Andres Gym as the team's homecourt. The San Andres public gym is ideal, he said, because its accessibility to Manila fans could solve the team's home crowd problems.

The Metrostars have been forced to use both the Ateneo Gym in Loyola and the Rizal Coliseum for their home games this year. Lack of a homecourt contributed a lot to the team's corresponding lack of a home crowd base, which really helps boost players' morale, officials said.

AnthonyServinio
06-21-2009, 11:22 PM
I will begin to annotate these news releases.


FORMER PBA CAGERS JOIN METROBALL

Manila, Jan. 26, 1998 - Four former Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) players have joined the Manila Metrostars team of the soon-to-be-launched Metropolitan Basketball Association (MBA or Metroball).

Ruben de la Rosa, Freche Ang, Peter Martin and Nandy Garcia were among seven players signed up by the Manila franchise yesterday. The league opens March 7 in Urdaneta, Pangasinan.

Also enlisted were former FEU standout Nestor Echano, AMA Computer College and Stag team member Chito Victolero and UP star Jasper Javier.

De la Rosa and Ang were members of the Purefoods team that won the All-Filipino last year. Martin was at various times with Pop Cola, Mobiline and Pepsi, while Garcia was with Alaska.

The first recruit was Rommel Adducul. Coach of the team is Ricky Dandan. The Manila Metrostars team is owned by Leandro Bantug and Loui Chuidian.

MANILA METROSTARS 1998 OPENING DAY ROSTER
Romel Adducul
Alex Compton
Peter Martin
Ruben de la Rosa
Chito Victolero
Freche Ang
Nonoy Chuatico
Nestor Echano
Nandy Garcia
Alrich Jareno
Jasper Javier
Cadel Mosqueda
Lino Ong

Coach: Ricky Dandan
Assistants: John Flores, Allan Altamirano
Manager: Allan Gregorio

AnthonyServinio
06-21-2009, 11:33 PM
BALLESTEROS SIGNS P8-M DEAL WITH METROBALL TEAM

Manila, June 13, 1998 - The Metropolitan Basketball Association team the Presidents signed up former Formula Shell forward Ernesto "Estong" Ballesteros to a 3-year contract which sources told Malaya sports reporters could probably be worth P8 million.

The 6-foot-5 Ballesteros, a former UST Growling Tiger, was on the injury list, then the reserve list, and finally turned into an unrestricted agent shortly before the signing.

Despite offers from several PBA teams, Ballesteros opted for the MBA, saying it is a big opportunity for him. "I am ready to give my all to prove worthy of the trust and confidence given me by the management of the Pangasinan Presidents," he said.

Ballesteros is expected to liven up Pangasinan's weak lineup, which has seen the team lose its last three games for the MBA's worst win-loss card of 4 wins and 8 losses.

Ballesteros will see action with his new team for the first time Sunday, when the Presidents tackle the Laguna Lakers in San Fernando, Pampanga.

Ernesto Ballesteros went on to be a bright spot for the hard luck Presidents for the rest of the 1998 season. The following season, he was shipped immediately after playing their first game to the defending National Champion Pampanga Dragons in exchange for another ex-Shell player in Eric Gascon. The trade proved beneficial as both players put up good numbers. Ballesteros himself got named to the 1999 North All-Star Team and earned the Sixth Man Award at the end of the year.

By the latter part of the 2000 wars, Ballesteros returned to the PBA as a free agent signee by Pop Cola upon the Dragons' elimination from the National Playoffs.

AnthonyServinio
06-21-2009, 11:45 PM
CHITO LOYZAGA TO COACH PANGASINAN PRESIDENTS

Davao City, June 6, 1998 - Sources from within the team have leaked to newsmen the possibility that former pro-basketball player Chito Loyzaga will be more than co-owner of the Presidents when the team meets the Manila Metrostars in the Metropolitan Basketball Association's games in Davao.

Loyzaga is reported to have been helping call the shots for the Pangasinan team, which has lost its last three games to land second from the last in the northern conference, with a 4-7 win-loss card.

Such a dismal showing means the Presidents might miss the bus and not be in the four-team conference semis.

The 6-foot-4 Loyzaga was not available for comment, but basketball circles are rife with rumors that Presidents head coach Dong Vergeire was not very pleased with Loyzaga's decision to be more actively involved in the coaching side of the team's management.

This never materialized.

Pangasinan Presidents coach Dong Vergeire was sacked after the franchise compiled too many losses despite having the core of the Men's National Team on its roster. He was replaced by basketball legend Orly Bauzon.

Despite his glowing credentials, Coach Bauzon failed to turn the team around. Assistant coach Robert Sison finished the season, handling the Presidents' final games.

Coach Sison stayed on as the Presidents' leader until midway in the 1999 season when he went back to being an assistant upon the appointment of Chot Reyes. Still, Coach Reyes could not find a winning formula so Coach Sison returned to the top. The team then changed their name to the Pangasinan Waves. The team failed to make the playoffs for the second straight season.

Although he had formed a team already, Coach Sison was informed that the Waves would not participate in the MBA's third season in 2000. The Waves though returned under new management in 2002 with coach Lawrence Chongson in-charge.

AnthonyServinio
06-21-2009, 11:53 PM
FOUR NEW TEAMS JOIN MBA

Clark Field, Pampanga, Oct. 23, 1998 - Metropolitan Basketball Association owners have agreed to accept four new teams in 1999 and raise the annual team salary cap from P7 to P8.5 million.

In a meeting by MBA officials, team owners and ABS-CBN, the league unanimously agreed to accept four expansion teams for next season, which is set to start on the third week of January in Cebu, to coincide with the Sinulog Festival in Cebu.

Of the 40 teams reported to be interested in joining the community-based league, only San Juan, Surigao, Nueva Ecija and Ilocos Norte are reportedly being seriously considered.

The San Juan team is supported by Mayor Jinggoy Estrada, while the three others are likewise backstopped by prominent clans involved in politics and business.

In the same meeting, team owners and officials agreed to raise the annual team salary cap to P8.5 million although some team owners are still trying to jack it up to P10 million.

"It was a unanimous decision to increase the salary cap to P8.5 million, with several owners trying to raise it to P10 million. This move was made because we want more marquee players from college and the provinces to join and increase the competitiveness of each team," said Gonzalez.

Several MBA teams are reportedly set to acquire top cagers from the PBL and the PBA at the end of the year.

MBA commissioner Ramon Fernandez said that each team will be limited to only two Fil-Americans beginning next year to give more opportunities to home-grown talents.

Only three of the four teams did go on to compete as expansion teams for 1999. Ilocos Norte decided not to pursue its application. The league welcomed the San Juan Knights, Nueva Ecija Patriots and Surigao Miners.

AnthonyServinio
06-22-2009, 12:04 AM
NEWSFLASH

MBA BUY-OUT DONE, GAMES RESUME NEXT WEEK

Manila, Aug. 13, 1998 - The on-again, off-again Metropolitan Basketball League buy-out is on again, and apparently nearing conclusion.

MBA commissioner Ramon Fernandez announced that the league's unfinished elimination round will resume August 19, and the semi-finals will begin August 22.

The team owners' buy-out of Metroball shares were reportedly concluded Tuesday.

ABS-CBN will pour a lot of technical resources in ensuring the success of the semi-final games' coverage, Fernandez said. Both the Visayas and Luzon games, played the same day, will be aired live one after the other, and would be seen nationwide on ABS-CBN's cable channels.

Fernandez also disclosed that the MBA teams have acquired 10 new players, but he identified only two, both from the defunct Wilkins Distilled Water team of the PBL. Celedon Camaso will join the Manila Metrostars, while Jun Paguinto will wear the Davao Eagles jersey. The rest of the new faces will be signing soon, pending clearances from their mother units.

A more formal, final and official announcement on the Metroball's buy-out scheme is expected in a few days from the teams' lawyers.



Because of the "scandal", the corporate body of the league known as Metroball Incorporated was dissolved. Replacing it was a re-structured corporation dubbed as Multi-Regional Basketball Incorporated (MRBI). The new corporation had more or less the same personalities in-charge and held office in the same place.

AnthonyServinio
06-22-2009, 12:21 AM
MBA-DAVAO EAGLES FORM
SOLID TEAM

Davao City, March 9, 1998 - The DAVAO Eagles coached by Francis Rodriguez is all set to launch in the new MBA (Metropolitan Basketball Association).

The Eagles composing mostly of former San Sebastian Stags have Eugene Quilban as ace player and who was formerly with Pop Cola and Pepsi (PBA). Other players are Cris Bade and Allan Garridon formerly of Formula Shell (PBA), and Toying Teves formerly of Sta Lucia Realty (PBA). Ready to lend support are former PBL top players Lou Regidor, Armoni Llagas, Ariel Tizon, Aldrin Barola and former UE Warriors Joemar Tierra and Rafael Rodriguez. Former Ginebra cager Pete Aguilar is also expected to be with the team.

The Metropolitan Basketball Association was to launch March 7, 1998.

Originally, this team was supposed to represent the province of Batangas. Unfortunately, their corporate backer withdrew and Coach Francis Rodriguez and his wards were taken in en masse by the Davao group led by Anthony del Rosario and Popit Garcia.

DAVAO EAGLES 1998 OPENING DAY ROSTER
Peter Aguilar
Criz Bade
Aldrin Barola
Arvin Bonleon
Allan Garrido
Paul Guerrero
Armoni Llagas
Eugene Quilban
Lou Regidor
Paeng Santos
Toying Teves
Jomar Tierra
Ariel Tizon


Coach: Francis Rodriguez
Assistants: Jimmy Martirez and Cholo Martin
Manager: Manny Calizo

Emon74
10-18-2009, 02:51 PM
MBA Biggies
Dragons vs Eagles
April 17-23, 1998

If the MBA best-of-seven finals were held today instead of October, it would be Davao against Pampanga battling for the first-ever league crown. The Eagles and the Dragons are off to a hot start and are currently on top of their respective divisions.
The Eugene Quilban-led Eagles own the best record in the league at 5-0, and are holding sway in the league's Southern Conference. On the other hand, the Dragons, with one-time PBA MVP Renato Agustin leading the way, cling to the leadership of the Northern Conference with a 4-1 mark. The two ballclubs have yet to meet head-on this season. The collision course wont set in until the 26th of April when Davao hosts Pampanga at the Rizal Memorial College stadium.
For a while, the teams appeared ready to put their unbeaten slates at stake in their first-ever, much awaited showdown. But that was until the Manila Metrostars spoiled the scenario by inflicting the Agustin-less Dragons with a 78-73 beating prior to the Holy Week break for their first loss after four straight games. Agustin, averaging a league second-best 25.2 points a game, skipped that match as he was recuperating from an ankle injury he sustained in Pampanga's previous game.
The Davao Eagles have been nothing short of being impressive turning imminent defeats into rousing victories. Proof of this is how Davao won three of its five games by buzzer-beaters while another, via overtime. The victories came at the expense of tough teams such as Manila (82-78 in OT), Pasig (84-83) on Rafael Santos' game-winning three pointer, and on Cebu Gems' hostile homecourt at the Cebu Coliseum (81-80) on Allan Garrido's game winning steal and layup in the final 30 seconds.
Despite the early success, Eagles coach Francis Rodriguez is not about to rest on his laurels. Cohesiveness and familiarity with the players, according to him are the major factors for his team's winning ways. Quilban, Garrido, Toying Teves and Armoni Llagas were Rodriguez' former wards at San Sebastian during the 1980s. Santos and Jomar Tierra, on the other hand, were with Rodriguez's UE Warriors while Lou Regidor and Aldrin Barola were under Rodriguez at Oriental Battery in the PBL.
Pampanga has also shown signs of cohesiveness although not as much as Davao does. Talent-wise, Pampanga, with four former PBA players on its roster, is no doubt the better team.

Emon74
10-20-2009, 04:26 PM
Metrostars Impressive
By Gerry Ramos
June 12-18, 1998

Is there such thing as homecourt magic? Manila mentor Ricky Dandan thinks so. For how can one explain the fact that since hosting their first two games at home, the Metrostars have been on the rise. Actually, the team had been on the roll lately that it has grabbed a share of the lead in the Northern Conference of the MBA.
Manila is on a five-game winning streak, and Rommel Adducul and company capped their win-run with a 100-89 rout of the troubled Pangasinan Presidents last week at the Rizal Memorial College gym in Davao City. Coupled by Laguna's 91-86 setback to Davao, the Stars suddenly found themselves on equal footing with the Lakers atop the Northern Conference. The two teams have identical 8-5 cards as the fledging league starts its Northern swing again this week.
More than winning at home, Dandan believes that Manila's streak was the result of the Stars finally becoming a solid unit that it ought to be. Earlier believed to be a mere two-man team of Rommel Adducul and Fil-Am Alex Compton, the other members of Manila's cast had stepped up their level of play the past few games. There's Nestor Echano, the hero in Manila's victory over Pasig, who averaged 16 points in the Stars last four games. Then, there's the invaluable contributions being dished out by former PBA players Reuben dela Rosa and Freche Ang and guard Chito Victolero.
The result: Manila has become an even tougher team on the road. Winning three of its last five games on enemy territory. The Stars did that against the Batangas Blades at the Centrum in De La Salle-Lipa City, where Alex Compton exploded for 24 points to power Manila to an 82-80 victory. Then came that huge 87-73 rout of Negros at the University of St. La Salle gym in Bacolod that handed Jun Noel his first loss as Slashers coach.
Dandan said that if the Stars would continue the way they're playing, a playoff spot is really not farfetched. Of course, making the playoffs is not just the objective of the team. Winning the first-ever MBA crown is its ultimate goal.

Emon74
11-03-2009, 07:32 AM
Crowded North
June 26-July 2, 1998

While the Southern Conference of the Metropolitan Basketball Association has been an all-Davao show, the same cant be said of the Northern Conference.
In less than two weeks, the leadership in the Northern Conference has changed hands three times. And the protagonists are the Pasig Blue Pirates, Laguna Lakers and Manila Metrostars. The reversal of fortunes came as a big surprise considering that in the early part of the regular season, the Pampanga Dragons appeared to have a lock on the division crown.
Not anymore. For now, though, the Pirates may have the upperhand after wresting the top spot with a stunning 103-96 win over the Lakers at the Narciso Ramos Sports Complex in Pangasinan. The win was the fourth straight for the Pirates of coach Joel Banal and was enough to give the team a 10-5 win-loss card and shoot up on top of the Northern Conference.
Prior to Pasig's ascension, Laguna had been the one lording over in the tough conference, dislodging the Pampanga Dragons with its own string of victories, until a six-game winning run by the Manila Metrostars enabled them to climb back and topple the Lakers. Manila could have extended their stay on top had they not lost a heartbreaking 81-79 setback at the hands of the Cagayan de Oro Nuggets-on two free throws by Peter Naron in the dying seconds right at their homecourt at the Ninoy Aquino Stadium.
Both Manila and Laguna have now identical 9-6 slates going to tomorrow's game at the San Luis Sports Complex-home of the Lakers.
Following a four-game skid, the Dragons have won back-to-back at home, including an 89-77 rout of the Cebu Gems that kept them unbeaten at the Pampanga Convention Center. The twin victories also gave Pampanga a 9-6 card to create a three-way tie for second place.
With the regular season entering its crucial stage, expect these four teams to give no room and no chance on being the best in the Northern Conference going into the playoffs.

Emon74
11-18-2009, 05:28 PM
Gems or Slashers
September 25-October 1, 1998

Take your pick: The Cebu Gems or the Negros Slashers. The two teams will dispute the Southern Conference crown of the Metropolitan Basketball Association.
The Slashers had actually landed first after the semifinals following a 109-91 conquest of Socsargen Marlins last Sunday. It gave them a 5-win, 1-loss card in the double round semis. The Gems finished second with a 4-2 card. In the best-of-seven conference title series which starts Sunday in Bacolod City, the Slashers are slightly favored over the Gems. Reason, of course, is the homecourt advantage the Slashers will be enjoying under the 2-3-2 format.
Negros coach Jun Noel is banking on their triple J connection-Johnedel Cardel, John Ferriols and Jack Tanuan-to carry the Slashers in the playoffs. The Gems of coach Tonichi Yturri, on the other hand, will bank on Fil-Ams Rob Wainright and Chris Duat and Cris Tan to take a game in Bacolod.
While the Southern Conference finals is already settled, the Northern Conference struggle remains to be tight with the Laguna Lakers, Manila Metrostars and Pampanga Dragons slugging it out. The Lakers and the Metrostars enjoy a slight edge with their 3-2 slates, but the Dragons have the advantage of playing their last two games at their homecourt-the Pampanga Convention Center.
Bolstered by Andy De Guzman and Udoy Belmonte, the Dragons battle the Lakers on September 23 and then the Metrostars on Saturday. If the Dragons, whose other stars are Ato Agustin and Gherome Ejercito, win both games, then it will be the Lakers and the Metrostars, who will relegated into a playoff for the right to meet the Dragons.
The Metrostars have also recruited 6-6 Celedon Camaso and reactivated assistant coach Nonoy Chuatico to increase their finals chances. Camaso forms a twin tower combination with Rommel Adducul, while Chuatico brings a lot of experience a the backcourt being manned by Fil-Am Alex Compton. Other Manila starters are Reuben De la Rosa and Nestor Echano.
The Northern and Southern Conference titlists will dispute the national title in another best-of-seven showdown.

Emon74
03-15-2011, 08:46 PM
November-December 1999

In the MBA Southern Conference finals, the Cebu Gems swept their two games against the Iloilo MegaVoltz at their homecourt in Cebu, 107-99 and 96-94 to take a commanding 2-0 lead in their best-of-five playoffs. The Gems could claim the Southern Conference title with a victory in Game 3 set in San Jose, Antique home of the MegaVoltz.
The unstoppable Fil-Am tandem of Rob Wainwright and Matt Mitchell led the Gems to that rousing victory in Game 1. Wainwright tallied a game-high 28 points while Mitchell chipped in 20.
Meanwhile, in the MBA's Northern Conference playoffs, Manila and Pasig split their first two games at the Mail and More Arena to create a stand-off in their best-of-five Northern Conference finals series. The Pasig-Rizal Pirates stole the homecourt advantage of the Manila MetroStars when they beat the latter, 85-81, in Game 1 but the MetroStars bounced back and won Game 2, 85-81, the following day.
With the split, the Pirates now hold the homecourt edge and could wrap up the series with victories in Game 3 and 4 at their compact but raucous home turf, the Caruncho Complex in Pasig.
Jay Magat held league MVP Alex Compton to "only" 15 points while contributing 15 markers of his own to lead the Pirates over the MetroStars, Magat also grabbed the Caltex Star Player of the Game award.
The Pirates actually snapped an impressive 16-game winning streak by the MetroStars at the Mail and More Arena. The Manila hoopsters have never, ever, lost at their homecourt. Contributing greatly to that sorry loss was franchise player Rommel Adducul's ejection late in the fourth quarter after incurring his second technical foul.
Adducul was assessed the "T" for swinging an elbow at Gilbert Castillo who hacked him in the hand to prevent him from going up for a shot.

Emon74
03-21-2011, 11:43 PM
MBA Games Wrap up

June 1999

Surigao Miners bumped off Negros, with a 103-102 come-from-behind victory at the Urios gym in Butuan City. the injury-hit Slashers were ousted from a title picture as their win-loss card slipped to 7-6.

The Megavoltz of Coach Danny Gavieries trooped to the Miners' home, with rookie Roy Lura leading the attack with 23 points, Iloilo pummeled Surigao, 100-82, to catch Cebu at 9-5 and nail the homecourt advantage as a result of its 2-1 record versus the Gems. Surigao's loss, its ninth in 13 outings, likewise ousted the Miners and pushed Socsargen (6 wins, 8 loss) into a Mindanao title showdown with Davao (9 wins, 5 loss).

The San Juan Knights checked a four-game skid to barge into the division 2 titular series with the Pasig-Rizal Pirates (11-5). Gherome Ejercito fired 27 points and Chris Calaguio added 18 on five triples to lead San Juan to a 90-64 mangling of Pangasinan at the Philsports Arena.

Red-hot Manila Metrostars illustrated its serious bid for supremacy in division I with a record-setting 106-70 whitewash of finals rival Pampanga at the Mail and More Stadium. Coach Louie Alas' wards are on a crest of a 10-game win run for a 14-2 card overall. The Dragons, who finished the elims at 10-6 absorbed the biggest losing margin since Pangasinan's 75-107 loss to Pasig last March 16.

September 1999

The San Juan Knights continue to show the way as they clobbered host Surigao Miners, 97-83 at Urios gym. Gherome Ejercito, Chris Calaguio and veteran big men Omanzie Rodriguez and Bonel Balingit carried the fight for Coach Philip Cezar's team as they handed the Miners their 21st defeat as against five victories.

Also extending its amazing winning run are the Manila Metrostars who manhandled Socsargen Marlins, 101-52 at the Mail and More Arena in Malate. The victory was the 19th straight as they continue to make history with their red-hot winning rampage. Manila is leading the league with its impressive 23-2 slate.

The Cagayan de Oro Amigos drew 21 points from veteran Roberto Jabar as they rolled past newcomer Nueva Ecija Patriots, 114-95 for their eight victory in 26 matches. The Patriots continue their slide in the Northern Conference with their 22nd defeat and only five wins to show.

Emon74
04-13-2011, 06:32 PM
MBA 2000 Season FedEx Crossover Cup
May-June 2000

The Nueva Ecija Patriots picked up steam in the crucial stretches of the match to score a pulse-pounding 86-80 come-from-behind win over Cebu Wednesday night at the Mandaue Sports Center.
The Gems blew a 25-point lead and were defeated right at their own turf. Though the Patriots are already out of the running for the last of the four spots offered in the semifinals, coach Jojo Villa's boys still went on for the victory since records of the current first conference will be added in the upcoming intra-conference stage.
Eric Gascon had his usual explosive manner as he fired a game-high 30 points while the wily Willie Miller added 15 to power Nueva Ecija from a 36-61 deficit early in the third and into the rousing victory that capped their stint in the season-opening conference with a 5-9 record.
Meanwhile, Pampanga Dragons drew an inspired performance from guard Junel Mendiola as they kept their flickering semifinals hopes alive with a 73-64 win over the surprisingly tough Socsargen Marlins on Sunday at the Bren Guiao Convention Center.
The victory simply ended the hopes of the Manila MetroStars, the Gems, the Slashers and the Batangas Blades to join the semis cast.

SAN JUAN KNIGHTS
Rule 2000 MBA FEDEX CROSSOVER CUP
As of June 30, 2000

The San Juan Knights survived a major scare from the visiting Laguna Lakers with their 108-104 triumph on Sunday to capture the 2000 MBA FedEx Crossover Cup at the San Juan Gymnasium.
Supported by Andok's chicken, the Knights' defense were at their tightest during the waning minutes of that exciting Game Two match, holding off the Lakers scoreless in one stretch to post a 2-0 sweep of this best-of-three title series.
The turning point for San Juan's title-clincher was Game One where the Knight gamely stole the homecourt edge from Laguna after registering a 97-88 win at the Lakers turf in Sta.Cruz, Laguna.
The littlest player on the San Juan side, playmaker Chito Victolero, stood tall in a crucial run, hitting five straight points for a 99-94 Knights lead, sending the overflow San Juan crowd in a frenzy.
Laguna, however, had one last stand, with Jasper Ocampo leading a 7-2 sput to knot the count for the last time at 101-all.
Struggling with his outside shooting all game long, Chris Calaguio touched off the Knights' big windup with four free throw conversions, with Victolero and Rafi Reavis chipping in two apiece in between, prompting Lakers' head coach Ed Cordero to walk over to Philip Cezar and congratulate him with still a few seconds left on the clock.
Unlike in the first game, the Laguna frontline of Jeffrey Flowers and Chris Nicdao supplied a big-time support to Chris Clay, but was hounded by ace gunner Biboy Simon.
Calaguio paced San Juan anew with 20 points, Clay topscored for Laguna with 29 but lapsed into 9 turnovers. Ocampo added 18 while Clay had 11. Held to only six points in Game One. Simon failed to score a single point in the crucial game, and even got slapped with a technical foul after figuring in an altercation with Randy Alcantara in the Third.

james_ty
04-14-2011, 07:50 AM
THE NEW MBA TV ANCHOR TEAM

Manila, March 25, 1998 - ABS-CBN has recruited a batch of veterans forming the on-air coverage team for the Metropolitan Basketball Asssociation games.

Top sportscaster Sev Sarmenta with Bill Velasco and Bob Novales are the anchors. Sarmenta has covered major sports events like the Olympics, Asian Games, PBA and others, Velasco was anchorman for the Atlanta Olympics, the SEA Games and over 50 world boxing championships. Novales' credits inlcude stints in PBA Radio Panel and anchor for local and international sports events.

In-depth analysis of the MBA games is provided by former Ateneo UAAP star Danny Francisco, PBA sportscaster Butch Maniego and former PBA coach Chot Reyes.

Interviewers include former tennis champ and Sports Unlimited host Dyan Castillejo, Studio 23 sportscaster Joseph Barrios, SNN Desk Editor Alex Santos, SNN reporter Mico Halili and former Sky News reporter Pia Gonzales.

The MBA games are aired live on Studio 23 and simulcasted on the Sarimanok News Network.



Sev Sarmenta stayed with ABS-CBN Sports as main anchor of the UAAP games from 2004-2007. In 2009, he moved to Solar where he does the PBA games. Occasionally, he also anchors the Shakey's V-League on NBN.

Bill Velasco is still with ABS-CBN where he does the NCAA games and hosts Hardball every Wednesday night on ANC, ABS-CBN's news channel. He also writes a column for The Philippine Star every Saturday and Monday.

Bob Novales has done some voice-over work and went into horse-racing coverages.

Danny Francisco did some PBA TV analyst work and he is now the team manager of Cebuana Lhuillier, which is competing in the PBA D-League.

Butch Maniego is now the tournament supervisor of the PBA D-League. He has been afflicted with diabetes for some time now and he is undergoing dialysis treatment.

Chot Reyes is the coach of the Talk 'n Text team in the PBA which won the Philippine Cup title last February.

Dyan Castillejo does boxing coverages on ABS-CBN and hosts Sports Unlimited on the same channel.

Mico Halili is now one of the PBA's top anchors for Solar TV.

Alex Santos anchors TV Patrol on ABS-CBN every weekend and hosts Umagang Kay Ganda on weekdays. He also hosts a new program on DZMM every Saturday that deals with OFWs.

Emon74
05-28-2011, 01:15 PM
MBA Games Wrap up
For the period ending August 11, 2000 (Dates not determined)

Stephen Padilla fired a career-high 40 points, with an all-time MBA high 10 three-pointers to lead the Cebu Gems past the struggling Socsargen Marlins, 109-85 in the MBA Intra-Challenge Cup at the Bren Guiao Convention Center.
The Gems solidified their hold on third spot in the South with four wins and two losses behind Iloilo (4-1) and Negros (5-2) while the Marlins, now handled by former assistant coach Djalma Amedo remain winless in three games.

Willie Miller completed a three-point play in the last 1.2 seconds to lift the Nueva Ecija Patriots past Pampanga Dragons, 98-95. The Patriots climbed to second spot behind idle Laguna while Pampanga, despite the big debut of Jonathan De Guzman, remains winless in four games.

The San Juan Knights bucked the absence of suspended head coach Philip Cezar behind the heroics of Rafi Reavis and Randy Alcantara to exact revenge over the Manila Metrostars, 96-71. Reavis fired 20 points, collared 13 rebounds and had six blocks, while Alcantara added 18, including four triples, as San Juan zoomed to 5-3 in the Northern Conference, Manila slipped to 3-2. The Metrostars bested the Knights, 102-98 in their first encounter that saw the Knights get a total of P304,000 in fines, in addition to the three-game suspension slapped on head coach Philip Cezar.

Emon74
05-28-2013, 06:11 AM
MBA Finally Opens shop
By Richard Dy

Despite occupying the "minor league" image due to the huge number of unknown cagers and former PBA players, the Metropolitan Basketball Association (MBA) managed to deliver the goods as it promised.
The new league, which was hyped as the future of Philippine professional basketball, was celebrated by a number of actors, teenage sensations and culminated by an electrifying dance number by Anjanette Abayari at the full house Narciso Ramos Sports Complex in Lingayen, Pangasinan last March 1.
On hand to join the fever pitch MBA celebration was his Excellency President Fidel Ramos, Pangasinan's favorite son, who stole the thunder by saying: "mas magaling ang MBA kaysa PBA." The Chief Executive, however, said that was just he heard from others.
Aside from the colorful opening ceremonies that was covered live nationwide over IBC-13 and ABS-CBN's sarimanok network and Studio 23, MBA Commissioner Ramon Fernandez together with other league officials honored many time Olympian Carlos "Big Difference" Loyzaga as the greatest Filipino Basketball Player.
The fireworks continued, following the Manila Metrostars overwhelming performance, where they clobbered the listless Cebu Gems, 96-70, in the league's first match.