View Full Version : The New Breeding Ground

03-11-2011, 10:22 AM
PBA D-League: The New Breeding Ground?By BRIAN YALUNG of www.mb.com.ph

The PBA Developmental League (PBA D-League) seems to be gaining popularity these days.

So much popularity that it has "technically" killed one of the oldest living amateur basketball leagues, the Philippine Basketball League (PBL or formerly known as the PABL).

At least this is what seems to be the case after original teams such as Cobra Energy Drink and Pharex jumped ship and joined the PBA D-League. Two new teams also made the switch with Café France and Ani-FCA likewise going to the PBA-sanctioned developmental league.

With that said, it seems that all eyes will now be shifting to the PBA D-League at the expense of the PBL. Prior to the shift, there had already been teams who were lined up at the D-League.

The confirmed teams included Powerade, Maynilad, Metro Pacific Tollways, Black Water/Ever Bilena, City of Antipolo, Handyfix/Max Bond, RnW Pacific Pipes and PC Gilmore.

Sad as it may seem, the PBL is likely to fold with the lack of participating teams. Appointed Commissioner Nolan Bernardino, son of the late Jun Bernardino, stressed that the PBL would need 6 teams to operate.

Players aged 17 to 26 will be allowed to play for teams in the PBA D-League. The opening of the league gives players who were cut another chance at honing their skills and possibly another shot at the PBA someday.

The D-League, modeled after that of the NBA D-League, will also help reserve players develop their skills rather than limit themselves as practice players or reserves for competing PBA teams at the moment.

The PBA D-League is set to open on March 12, 2011 at the Arena in San Juan.

03-16-2011, 12:51 PM
I wonder who will emerge the D League's inaugural champion and MVP? This early I think the championship will be disputed by NLEX and probably Cebuana. Paul Lee and Calvin Abueva should compete for the MVP, with possibly Cliff Hodge in the mix.

03-25-2011, 08:32 AM
Good to see RnW has Rex Leynes and Raymond Ilagan, two former St Francis stars, in the roster.

I hope to see Rey Gracilla of San Sebastian Cavite here soon as well.

04-05-2011, 11:00 AM
I've yet to see the D part of this D-League thus far.

All I've seen are established / older stars imposing their will on younger / up-coming players. So where is the development? In "exposure", in "stepped up competition against the best of the best"?

Old PBL teams like Cobra and Pharex are doing well with their old reliables. NLEX is being led by NCAA superstar Calvin Abueva. Cebuana has a whole host of solid stars.

Where is the development of everyone else?

04-05-2011, 12:34 PM
Pre..panuorin mo yung Maclean Sabellina ng Pacific Pipes..galing non hehe ;D

04-06-2011, 12:59 PM
Akala ko 'yung Ramon Mabayo ng Cafe France, naka-20 10 yata nung last game nila. ;D

11-15-2011, 08:53 AM
I wonder how much "development" is actually being done in the D League. Most of the players I see doing well are either established college superstars like Garvo Lanete or commercial league veterans / ex-pros like Rex Leynes or Fil-Am studs like Jordan Sanvictores. These guys have more or less well-polished games already fit for the PBA. But I always thought the D League was for players who still had to polish their games to take on the PBA. Rabeh Al-Hussaini never played in the D League, or even the old PBL and yet he's done well as a PBA newcomer. Guys like Cliff Hodge and even Chris Ellis are basically just biding their time more than "developing".

Even the D League coaches to me are all old hands, and I cannot really say how good or bad they are at "developing" players. It si easy enough to take credit for "giving a guuy a break", but it is tough to consider something like that as "development". If a player was good enough and pro-ready to begin with, like Rabeh and guys like Calvin Abueva and Dave Marcelo, it is tough for anyone to claim credit for "developing" a player who never really needed it. If anything the D League is really more of a platform for showcase players to only further showcase themselves. What about the other guys who really could use the development for which the D stands?

01-04-2012, 08:09 AM
Virgil Buensucejo and Jordan Sanvictores are playing well for Pacific Pipes. I hope they keep it up. Buensucejo is a quick 5'8" sprinter who spreads the wealth but needs to work on his jumpshot, while Sanvictores is a legit and hardworking 6'7" banger who needs to work on his post offense.

01-05-2012, 07:13 AM
I wonder how much "development" is actually being done in the D League. Most of the players I see doing well are either established college superstars like Garvo Lanete or commercial league veterans / ex-pros like Rex Leynes or Fil-Am studs like Jordan Sanvictores. These guys have more or less well-polished games already fit for the PBA. But I always thought the D League was for players who still had to polish their games to take on the PBA. Rabeh Al-Hussaini never played in the D League, or even the old PBL and yet he's done well as a PBA newcomer. Guys like Cliff Hodge and even Chris Ellis are basically just biding their time more than "developing".

Even the D League coaches to me are all old hands, and I cannot really say how good or bad they are at "developing" players. It si easy enough to take credit for "giving a guuy a break", but it is tough to consider something like that as "development". If a player was good enough and pro-ready to begin with, like Rabeh and guys like Calvin Abueva and Dave Marcelo, it is tough for anyone to claim credit for "developing" a player who never really needed it. If anything the D League is really more of a platform for showcase players to only further showcase themselves. What about the other guys who really could use the development for which the D stands?

Ellis and Hodge should have been in the PBA by now but they cannot apply for the draft unless they play 2 D League conferences. The two guys also need to complete their citizenship documents before they apply.

01-05-2012, 08:00 AM
^ So James, you agree that there really is no development in the D League...?

01-20-2012, 08:35 AM
Maclean Sabellina of Boracay Rum was the true revelation in this tournament. It took him six years but he's finally arrived as a legit PBA-calibre player. One to two more years of aggressive seasoning and he might yet become a first round draft pick.

01-20-2012, 10:13 AM
^ So James, you agree that there really is no development in the D League...?

In a way, there is. But the problem is that NLEX is too strong a team for the D League. I think the Road Warriors should be a PBA expansion franchise.

02-08-2012, 10:35 AM
Vic Manuel earns the MVP trophy averaging over 15 points and eight rebounds per game for Cebuana Lhuillier. Congratulations, Vic.

02-08-2012, 05:15 PM
I purposely refrained from covering the D-League this conference because it was obvious from the beginning that N-LEX was going to waltz to the title, so no real earthshaking news was to be expected. The league has to implement some sort of draft soon to balance the teams, otherwise it's gonna get pretty boring.

02-09-2012, 07:29 AM
I heard reports that Freego Jeans will leave the D League bec coach Leo Austria wants to concentrate on the UAAP this year.

07-27-2012, 11:18 AM
The next D League conference is opening in October, right after the major college season.

I wonder what thrills and spills will be in store for NLEX fans this conference? Who will claim second place in this tough developmental tournament?

Sam Miguel
09-04-2012, 09:16 AM
By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

10:13 pm | Monday, September 3rd, 2012

More teams will challenge NLEX’s reign as four new squads recently signed up for the new PBA D-League season starting next month.

Jose Rizal University-Air 21, Arellano University, Informatics and HTC Philippines sent letters of intent to the PBA Commissioner’s Office, making the Aspirants’ Cup conference a 12-team field.

“The intention of these new applicants to be a part of the coming season only goes to show that the league has established a market that is acceptable to our basketball-loving fans,” said PBA commissioner Chito Salud yesterday.

The Road Warriors, who are vying for a fourth straight crown, and the rest of the participating teams have until Sept. 15 to pay the entry fee to confirm their participation.

Also set to see action in this tournament are last conference runner-up Big Chill, Blackwater Sports, Cebuana Lhuillier, Boracay Rum, Cagayan Rising Suns and Erase Plantcenta.

NLEX lost key players to the pro league, but remains a powerhouse with its recruitment of Ateneo stars Greg Slaughter and Nico Salva.

Big Chill also lost its key cogs to the pros, led by third PBA overall draft pick Alex Mallari, but hopes to build another competitive crew.

Sam Miguel
10-09-2012, 10:04 AM
D-League stint for JRU Bombers

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

10:07 pm | Monday, October 8th, 2012

Jose Rizal University hopes to challenge the heavyweights when the Heavy Bombers debut in the PBA D-League late this month

“We’ll just do the best we can,” said JRU coach Vergel Meneses. “Hopefully, being an underdog will serve us in good stead.”

Three-time champion NLEX remains a favorite in a strong field that includes Big Chill, Cebuana Lhuillier, Blackwater Sports, Boracay Rum, Café France, Cagayan Rising Suns, Erase Plantcenta, Informatics/Phiten and HTC Philippines.

“We know the teams here are strong,” said Meneses, adding that a stint in the league will expose his players to a “high level of competition and develop the chemistry of the team.”

The Bombers, led by wingman Nate Matute, are still vying for a Final Four slot in the NCAA men’s basketball tournament.

“This will also help us in our preparation for the next NCAA season,” said Meneses.

Sam Miguel
10-23-2012, 09:13 AM
Twinbill fires off PBA D-League

Cebuana, Boracay fives tangle in Aspirants’ Cup today

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

11:46 pm | Monday, October 22nd, 2012

CEBUANA Lhuillier hopes to sustain its winning ways even with a revamped roster as Season 3 of the PBA D-League unfolds today.

Despite losing several topnotch players, the Gems aim to start strong against Boracay Rum in their 4 p.m. duel at the start of the Aspirants’ Cup at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.

“We’re still working on chemistry and teamwork,” said coach Beaujing Acot of the Gems, who lost former MVP Vic Manuel to the pro league and Letran ace Kevin Alas, to three-time champion NLEX.

“It will be very tough, but we will work hard and try to win our first game.”

Informatics, one of three teams debuting this season, takes on Cagayan in the 2 p.m. match, right after the 1 p.m. opening ceremony.

“Our goal is to be in the top four,” Informatics coach Buds Reyes said of his Icons, the Collegiate Athletics League champion bannered by Mark Montuano and Mark Doligon. “We want better exposure, that’s why we joined the league.”

Testing their readiness are the Rising Suns, who are powered by Far Eastern University’s Mark Bringas, La Salle’s Joshua Webb and former Arellano star Adrian Celada.

Boracay Rum coach Lawrence Chongson also expects his Waves to match up well with the Gems behind Ken Acibar, Toto Bandaying and Glenn Khobuntin.

“In the absence of a rookie drafting system, I have stuck to the principle of maintaining a core group of players to hopefully offset the lack of available marquee players in our team with personnel familiarity instead,” said Chongson.

NLEX, which kicks off its bid for a fourth straight crown next week, remains a favorite with new recruits Greg Slaughter and Nico Salva of Ateneo.

“For this coming conference, all teams are very competitive,” NLEX team manager Ronald Dulatre said during the league press conference yesterday at Gerry’s Grill in Ali Mall, Cubao.

“With the departure of nine of our players, definitely we’re a new team, so our concern right now is chemistry.”

Big Chill, which lost to NLEX in last conference’s finals, expects another solid run behind FEU standouts Terrence Romeo and Arvie Bringas, Adamson’s Alex Nuyles and 6-foot-9 Filipino-American rookie Isaac Holstein.

“We lost our first five but we’re satisfied that those who came in can fill the void,” said Big Chill coach Robert Sison.

Fruitas, another newcomer in the 11-team cast, tapped the San Beda core along with University of the Philippines’ Mike Silungan and St. Benilde’s Carlo Lastimosa.

“This is a group of young, energetic and competitive players,” said Fruitas coach Nash Racela.

Sam Miguel
10-23-2012, 09:16 AM
Blackwater taps Abdul, 5 other UST Tigers

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

10:10 pm | Sunday, October 21st, 2012

BLACKWATER Sports tapped six University of Santo Tomas mainstays even as two other teams also beefed up their lineup with varsity standouts in the PBA D-League that will blast off tomorrow.

Karim Abdul, the Cameroonian center who helped power the Tigers to the UAAP Finals, leads Blackwater’s bid in the Aspirants’ Cup where three-time champion NLEX remains a heavy favorite.

Also suiting up for the Elite are veteran UST point guard Jeric Fortuna and forwards Kevin Ferrer, Kim Lo, Louie Vigil and Paolo Pe.

Big Chill, which bowed to NLEX in last conference’s finals, lost several key cogs to the pros but hopes for another strong run with new recruit Terrence Romeo of Far Eastern University at the helm.

Teaming up with the star guard are fellow FEU cager Arvie Bringas and Adamson’s Alex Nuyles and Rodney Brondial.

Fruitas, one of the three debuting teams this season, hopes to bank on University of the Philippines’ Mike Silungan and St. Benilde’s Carlo Lastimosa.

The league fires off with Informatics battling Cagayan Rising Suns at 2 p.m., followed by the 4 p.m duel between Boracay Rum and Cebuana Lhuillier.

NLEX, the only champion the league has known since its inception in 2010, aims for a fourth straight crown with another star-studded crew led by Greg Slaughter and Nico Salva of five-time UAAP champion Ateneo.

Other collegiate stars bannering the Road Warriors are Letran’s Kevin Alas, FEU’s RR Garcia, Adamson’s Eric Camson and San Sebastian’s Ronald Pascual and Ian Sangalang.

Completing the 11-team field this conference are Café France, Erase Xfoliant and newcomer Jose Rizal University.

Sam Miguel
10-24-2012, 09:34 AM
Gems sparkle, thwart Waves

Rising Suns nail 1st league win

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

1:29 am | Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

RETOOLED Cebuana Lhuillier got through its first test as June Dizon keyed a strong finish to power the Gems past Boracay Rum, 86-76, at the start of the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup yesterday at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.

Dizon buried six of Cebuana’s last 11 points in the final three minutes, helping the Gems pull away from the Waves for good from a slim 75-71 advantage.

Cebuana coach Beaujing Acot said his Gems, a semifinalist last conference, have been adjusting from the departure of several marquee players led by former MVP Vic Manuel and gunner Kevin Alas.

“We didn’t get big names, but we got role players who want to be big,” said Acot. “It’s a new team, so it’s a process.”

Dizon finished with 18 points to share scoring honors with James Mangahas.

Cagayan Valley also got off to a winning start as the Rising Suns slipped past Informatics, 89-85, for their first league triumph after a winless stint last conference.

Chris Exciminiano fired 20 points and James Forrester added 15, the last on a breakaway after the Icons blew a chance to tie or win the game following a turnover in the dwindling seconds.

“It’s a welcome win after the last conference when we went 0-9,” said Cagayan coach Alvin Pua.

Forrester, a Filipino-Canadian standout from Arellano, also collected five rebounds, seven assists and a couple of steals for the Rising Suns.

The Gems lost several key cogs to the pro league including Manuel and Yousef Taha, while Alas was tapped by three-time champion NLEX and Terrence Romeo by Big Chill.

Eric Suguitan posted a double-double of 10 points and 13 boards for the Gems.

The scores:

First Game

CAGAYAN 89—Exciminiano 20, Forrester 15, Celada 15, Webb 11, Lao 9, Poligrates 7, Bringas 5, Melano 4, Bartolo 3, Chiong 0, Dela Cruz 0, Macuha 0.

INFORMATICS 85—Rogado 27, Hayes 22, Bautista 7, Doligon 7, Mangahas 6, Benitez 6, Cruz 6, Catlos 4, Sanghera 0.

Quarters: 20-27, 42-43, 68-66, 89-85

Second Game

CEBUANA LHUILLIER 86—Mangahas 18, Dizon 18, Aguilar 10, Suguitan 10, Zamar 8, Custodio 7, Sarangay 6, Leynes 4, Mabayo 3, Buensuceso 2, Trinidad 0, Bagares 0.

BORACAY RUM 76—Taha 25, Bandaying 20, Viernes 7, Ilagan 7, Eguilos 6, Siruma 5, Sabellina 4, Foronda 2, Tolentino 0.

Quarters: 22-19, 37-40, 63-55, 86-76

Sam Miguel
10-25-2012, 09:16 AM
Big Chill gets going vs JRU today

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

11:01 pm | Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

Terrence Romeo and Ryan Buenafe will lead the new-look Big Chill squad when it battles newcomer Jose Rizal University-Air 21 in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup today at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.

Coach Robert Sison hopes to draw from the two varsity standouts the same firepower provided by Alex Mallari and Keith Jensen, the Filipino-American duo highly drafted in the pros after leading the Superchargers to last conference’s finals.

“We’re happy to sign up these exciting players,” said Sison.

The Superchargers and the Bombers clash at 2 p.m., followed by the 4 p.m. match between Café France and another debuting squad Fruitas.

Buenafe, fresh from Ateneo’s fifth UAAP title romp, teams up with Far Eastern University’s Romeo and Arvie Bringas, Adamson’s Rodney Brondial, San Sebastian’s Jonathan Semira and University of the Philippines’ Jelo Montecastro.

The Bombers, though, hope teamwork will be their advantage with the core of John Lopez, Alex Almario and Byron Villarias leading their campaign.

“We’re just here to expose the players to a higher level of competition and develop the team’s chemistry,” said JRU coach Vergel Meneses.

The Bombers also beefed up by acquiring pro player Khazim Mirza and Arellano’s Rocky Acidre.

10-26-2012, 04:03 PM
Canlas to the rescue as Big Chill escapes

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

4:33 am | Friday, October 26th, 2012

Mark Canlas buried a buzzer-beater from underneath as a struggling Big Chill crew pipped Jose Rizal-Air21, 77-76, yesterday in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup at Ynares Sports Arena.

Canlas knocked in the Superchargers’ last seven points, including the game-winner after a wild battle for the rebound following Terrence Romeo’s missed jumper.

“We were so tight,” said Big Chill coach Robert Sison after last year’s finalists barely escaped the league newcomer.

Fruitas also survived Café France’s late rally to hack out an 88-82 win in the second game and join Big Chill and opening-day winners Cebuana Lhuillier and Cagayan Valley in the early lead.

Jai Reyes unloaded 21 points, the last six on free throws inside the final 33 seconds, after the Shakers nearly blew an 82-70 edge in the last three minutes.

“It was hard because we still don’t have a complete lineup,” said coach Nash Racela as the Shakers had to do without San Beda’s aces who are still seeing action in the NCAA title series.

Janus Lozada’s back-to-back triples gave the Superchargers their first lead in the final quarter, 63-59.

Rocky Acidre strung up six points to tie the game at 75, before a Dexter Maiquez free throw pushed the Bombers ahead, 76-75, with 20.6 seconds left.

The scores:

First Game

BIG CHILL 77—Canlas 14, Romeo 13, Lozada 11, Bringas 10, Canta 8, Montilla 7, Montecastro 6, Villahermosa 6, Santos 2, Semira 0, Collado 0.

JRU-AIR 21 76—Maiquez 19, Acidre 17, Mirza 10, Apinan 10, Lopez 7, Caperal 5, Villarias 4, Pinto 2, Miranda 2, Dela Paz 0, Almario 0, Ighalo 0.

Quarters: 14-15, 33-35, 52-55. 77-76

Second Game

FRUITAS 88—Reyes 21, Lastimosa 16, Antonio 12, Belleza 11, Colina 11, Paguia 7, Hernandez 4, Escueta 4, Erioubu 2, Terso 0.

CAFÈ FRANCE 82—Parala 22, Knuttel 18, Pogoy 13, Mendoza 9, Jamon 7, Padilla 7, Magat 4, Batino 2, Garcia 0, Magbitang 0, Antipuesto 0.

Quarters: 21-17, 45-44, 63-56, 88-82

Sam Miguel
10-30-2012, 10:39 AM
Rising Suns target second win vs Waves

(The Philippine Star)

Updated October 30, 2012 12:00 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Cagayan Valley tries to make it two-in-row as it goes up against Boracay Rum even as fancied NLEX opens its bid for a fourth straight championship against Erase Xfoliant in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup at The Arena in San Juan today.

The Rising Suns, who went 0-9 in the last conference’s Foundation Cup, kicked off their campaign this year with an 89-85 decision over newcomer Informatics last Tuesday and will be seeking no less than the early solo lead against the Waves at 4 p.m.

“Hopefully, we can keep it (win) going,” said Cagayan Valley coach Alvin Puna, who improved his roster by recruiting former Cebuana Lhuillier Gems’ Christopher Exciminiano and Adrian Celeda, Mark Bringas and Fil-Canadian James Forrester.

Exciminiano scored 20 points, Forrester had 15 points, seven assists and two steals while Celada made 15 points and three assists to help power the Rising Suns past the Informatics side.

In contrast, Boracay Rum is coming off a 76-86 defeat to Cebuana Lhuillier.

But focus will be on NLEX, which swept the league’s first three tournaments but is hard-pressed to keep its win run with a practically new squad following the exodus of its key players to the pro ranks, including Cliff Hodge, Calvin Abueva, Chris Ellis, Eman Monfort and Jaypee Belencion.

The Road Warriors, who will now be led by Baser Amer, Chris Sumalinog, Eric Camson, Nico Salva and Greg Slaughter, play the Erasers at 2 p.m.

Sam Miguel
10-31-2012, 08:54 AM
NLEX wipes out Erase; Cagayan triumphs again

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

11:41 pm | Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

NLEX unveiled a new cast who flashed awesome firepower in a 101-71 crushing of Erase Xfoliant yesterday in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup at Filoil Flying V Arena.

“This team is different,” said coach Boyet Fernandez as the Road Warriors launched their bid for a fourth straight championship with an explosive show behind a young but powerful lineup led by Ateneo’s Nico Salva and San Beda’s Baser Amer.

“We have the youngest team right now in terms of age average and we haven’t really practiced as a complete team. But the way they passed the ball, it’s like they’re familiar with each other.”

Garvo Lanete pumped in 17 points to lead six NLEX players in double figures, while Ian Sangalang had 14 points and seven rebounds.

Earlier, Cagayan Valley picked up its second straight triumph with an 88-79 decision of Boracay Rum to grab the early lead in the 11-team field.

Meanwhile, the league forfeited Fruitas’ Thursday victory, 88-82, over Café France as the Shakers fielded an ineligible player in the first half of the game.

Commissioner Chito Salud reversed the results and fined the Shakers P25,000 since forward Joseph Erioubu lacked “documentary requirements to prove that he is a Filipino citizen.”

The scores:

First Game

NLEX 101—Lanete 17, Sangalang 14, Salva 13, Ganuelas 13, Long 12, R. Pascual 10, Sumalinog 7, Camson 6, Amer 2, J. Pascual 2, Hermida 2, Alas 2, Garcia 1, Escoto 0.

ERASE XFOLIANT 71—Matute 22, Mendoza 15, Acosta 8, Stevens 7, Allen 5, Thompson 4, Gomez 4, Babayeme 4, Cornejo 2, Vidal 2, Arboleda 0, Vijandre 0.

Quarters: 30-19, 49-30, 76-44, 101-71

Second Game

CAGAYAN 88—Exciminiano 23, Almazan 20, Webb, 12, Forrester 7, Bringas 7, Poligrates 6, Lao 5, Melano 4, Celada 4, Bartolo 0, Chiong 0, Macuha 0.

BORACAY RUM 79—Cabrera 17, Acibar 11, Viernes 10, Khobuntin 9, Ilagan 9, Taha 7, Tolentino 6, Sabellina 4, Siruma 3, Bandaying 3, Eguilos 0, Foronda 0.

Quarters: 29-13, 47-36, 69-61, 88-79

Sam Miguel
10-31-2012, 08:54 AM
^^^ NLEX won? What a shocker...

Sam Miguel
10-31-2012, 08:55 AM
Fruitas win forfeited for fielding ineligible player

By Mark Giongco


1:23 pm | Tuesday, October 30th, 2012

MANILA, Philippines – PBA Commissioner Chito Salud has nullified Fruitas’ 88-82 win over Cafe France after the Shakers played an ineligible player in their PBA D-League debut last Thursday.

In an article posted Tuesday in the league’s website, Salud also slapped the team with a P25,000 fine for fielding in Joseph Erioubu in the second quarter despite “the lack of documentary requirements to prove that he is a Filipino citizen.”

“This Office having no record in its file of the submission of the Bureau of Immigration (BI) Order of Recognition, the minimum requirement for foreign-born players like Mr. Erioubu, holds that the said player is ineligible to play in the PBA D-League until such time that he complies with the league’s documentary requirements,” Salud informed Fruitas head coach Nash Racela in his letter stating his decision.

Erioubu’s mother is a Filipino but having born in Hong Kong, the six-foot-four forward must have an Order of Recognition from the immigration department to be eligible in the D-League.

The 20-year-old Erioubu, who also plays for Mapua, played for eight minutes and recorded two points on one-of-four shooting from the field.

Fruitas hopes to put the matter behind it when it battles Cebuana Lhuillier on November 8.

The Shakers will be favored to win with key cogs from three-time NCAA champion San Beda already available to give them a boost.

Sam Miguel
10-31-2012, 08:56 AM
^^^ What idiocy is that? Joseph Eriobu has been on the NATIONAL YOUTH TEAM, and the D League says he IS NOT a Filipino!?

10-31-2012, 11:18 AM
ganyan talaga pba. kahit dalhin mo nanay mo na pinoy o nakakapag salita ka naman ng tagalog di pa rin papayag yan.pero yung mga fil-shams di ko alam panu nakalusot yun.

11-03-2012, 07:18 AM
Ang Fil-shams nga ang dahilan ng irrational requirements ng PBA. Na-kuryente sila nung panahon na yun, kaya katakut-katok na documento ang hinihingi nila ngayon.

Yung Rome de la Rosa nga eh na anak ng dating PBA player na si Romy, nanay niyan Pinay din. Dito pinanganak sa Pilipinas, ninong pa nga sa binyag sina Benjie Paras at Ronnie Magsanoc, kung ano-anong dokumento pa ang dapat isumite para lang makapaglaro.... nakakapaglaro na ba?

Pero in fairness sa PBA, ang hinihinging dokumento sa isa, yun din sa lahat. Irrational nga lang.

11-03-2012, 09:00 PM
ang lakas ng NLEX!!!! parang national team (less k.long) pang SEA games level wala pa si slaughter niyan, parang ok lang sa ibang players ng NLEX ang mabangko.. may salary cap ba sa D-league?????

11-06-2012, 09:37 AM
Cagayan seeks No. 3 vs Erase

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

9:57 pm | Monday, November 5th, 2012

Hoping to sustain its surprise start, Cagayan Valley guns for a third straight victory when it faces Erase Xfoliant in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup at 2 p.m. today at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.

“There are still many things to improve on,” said coach Alvin Pua after his Rising Suns won two close games. “We still lack maturity. We always hurry on our offensive plays, that’s why we have many turnovers. Good thing we always find ways to win.”

Big Chill, which won its first assignment on a buzzer-beater, tackles Blackwater Sports in the second game at 4 p.m.

“We’re still adjusting,” Big Chill coach Robert Sison said of his retooled roster.

Big Chill slipped past Jose Rizal U-Air 21, 77-76, behind Mark Canlas, who fired the Superchargers’ last seven points, including the game-winner.

Karim Abdul, the Cameroonian center who powered the Tigers to the UAAP Finals, teams up anew with UST stars Jeric Fortuna and Kevin Ferrer along with Blackwater veterans.

Meanwhile, PBA commissioner Chito Salud slapped Café France’s Marion Magat, Fruitas’ Jumbo Escueta and JRU-Air 21’s Michael Miranda with a P2,500 fine each for various infractions in their recent games.

11-06-2012, 09:38 AM
ang lakas ng NLEX!!!! parang national team (less k.long) pang SEA games level wala pa si slaughter niyan, parang ok lang sa ibang players ng NLEX ang mabangko.. may salary cap ba sa D-league?????

P30,000 per month I think is the maximum salary per player, and only up to six or seven players on any roster are entitled to the max salary, kind of like how they do it in the PBA.

Perhaps James Ty can clarify further.

11-08-2012, 11:22 AM
NLEX five, C. Lhuillier seek share of D-L lead

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

10:00 pm | Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

THREE-TIME champion NLEX and Cebuana Lhuillier try to grab a piece of the lead in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup today when they battle separate foes at Trinity University of Asia gym in Quezon City.

The Road Warriors, dubbed by their coach as a team “still a work in progress,” shoot for a second straight triumph against the winless Boracay Rum at 2 p.m. while the Gems also gun for a 2-0 start versus Fruitas in the second game at 4 o’clock.

“My players have the talent, but how we’re going to play as a team still worries me,” said NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez. “As I have said, our team is still a work in progress in terms of chemistry.”

The Road Warriors lost several key cogs to the pros yet assembled another formidable cast bannered by collegiate stars Nico Salva, RR Garcia, Kevin Alas, Ian Sangalang and Baser Amer.

And they showcased their firepower in their first assignment where they coasted to a 30-point crushing of Erase Xfoliant, 101-71, last week.

The Gems also got off to a good start by forging an 86-76 victory over Boracay Rum behind June Dizon and James Mangahas.

Fruitas also had a victorious league debut over Café France, 88-82, but league commissioner Chito Salud forfeited the Shakers’ win for fielding an ineligible player.

Shakers coach coach Nash Racela acknowledged his error in fielding Joseph Erioubu, a Filipino-Nigerian who has yet to complete the documents the league requires.

“We need to learn and move forward,” said Racela.

Greg Slaughter’s stint for NLEX similarly remains on hold until Ateneo’s towering Filipino-American star meets the league requirements.

Sam Miguel
12-12-2012, 10:23 AM
Bakers surprise Road Warriors; Shakers score

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

12:01 am | Wednesday, December 12th, 2012

PULLING off the improbable, Café France shocked NLEX with a 66-52 decision that snapped the three-time champion’s record streak in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup yesterday at Trinity University of Asia Gym.

Jens Knuttel and Marion Magat fueled the Bakers’ assault in the second half of the stunning victory that halted the Road Warriors’ phenomenal 24-game winning run dating back in January.

“The motivation was to make history,” said Café France coach Egay Macaraya. “I give it to the boys. They never gave up. And I guess it’s also the Christmas season. A lot of miracles happen and this is one of those miracles.”

Newcomer Fruitas completed a day of upsets as the Shakers downed last conference’s finalist Big Chill, 88-81, in the second game.

Carlo Lastimosa pumped in 32 points to fuel the Shakers’ strong second half, which they kicked off with a pivotal 12-0 run for a 51-39 lead after a halftime deadlock at 39.

“Lastimosa has been consistent,” Fruitas coach Nash Racela said of the St. Benilde gunner, who also shot 30 last week. “But it was our defense that was remarkable today, with guys like (Joseph) Terso and (Anjo) Caram taking turns in defending (Terrence) Romeo.”

Café France climbed to a share of third at 4-2 with Big Chill and idle Cagayan Valley, while Fruitas improved to 3-3.

Knuttel poured in all of his 14 points in the second half where the Bakers drilled 15 unanswered points that turned a 40-48 deficit into a 55-48 advantage. Magat delivered 13 markers, 14 rebounds and a couple of blocks.

“All good things come to an end,” said coach Boyet Fernandez after his Road Warriors absorbed their first setback this conference for a 7-1 card.

“We didn’t play defense today. I told them at halftime that we’re not playing the way we should be playing. We have to make stops. Eventually Café France caught us in the fourth, then we couldn’t set up and we were rushing our shots. I hope this will be a lesson for all of us.”

The scores:

First Game

CAFE FRANCE 66—Knuttel 14, Magat 13, Padilla 10, Jamon 9, Lopez 6, Alas 5, Parala 5, Mendoza 2, Pogoy 2, Magbitang 0, Antipuesto 0, Dela Cruz 0.

NLEX 52—Pascual J. 10, Ganuelas 7, Sangalang 7, Salva 6, Long 5, Alas 5, Pascual R. 4, Slaughter 2,Amer 2, Lanete 2, Garcia 2, Hermida 0, Sumalinog 0, Camson 0.

Quarters: 11-13, 25-32, 44-48, 66-52

Second Game

FRUITAS 88—Lastimosa 32, Adeogun 14, Caram 8, Terso 7, Colina 6, Silungan 6, Escueta 6, Escobal 3, Belleza 3, Antonio 2, Dela Rosa 1, Mendoza 0, Pascual 0.

BIG CHILL 81—Romeo 18, Buenafe 13, Montilla 13, Bringas 12, Collado 12, Villahermosa 5, Canlas 4, Cortes 2, Santos 2, Canta 0, Semira 0, Lozada 0.

Quarters: 19-26, 39-39, 62-59, 88-81

12-20-2012, 10:03 AM
Café France eyes third straight win

By Cedelf P. Tupas

Philippine Daily Inquirer

12:48 am | Thursday, December 20th, 2012

Slowly but surely developing a winning mentality, Café France seeks a third straight victory against dangerous Blackwater Sports today in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.

Riding high on their impressive performances of late, the Bakers hope to stay sharp in the 12 noon duel that could prove crucial to both team’s bids of gaining an automatic semifinal berth.

The Bakers’ stirring run not only included wins over Fruitas and Informatics, but also a stunning 66-52 win over NLEX last week.

“I told the boys this is the start of the journey of being a winner,” said Café France coach Egay Macaraya. “We have to face all challenges now.”

Café France and Blackwater Sports are tied for third place with 4-2 (win-loss) record and remain in contention for an outright semifinal berth that awaits the top two teams of the elimination round.

Rivals NLEX and Cebuana Lhuillier square off in the second game at 2 p.m. with the Road Warriors aiming to nail a ninth victory.

01-19-2013, 08:17 AM
Tambay din kaya ako dito paminsan-minsan. Since PBA D-League narin lang ang natitirang raket ko, lets try to generate fans' interest on this thread too. Wala ng PBL, hindi pa naman start ng collegiate leagues, katatapos lang ng PBA 1st conference. Don't tell me nau-umayan na sa basketball itong Basketball Republic natin.

Exciting ang mga actions sa D-League. Except for NLEX na medyo overmatched para sa competition, the other 10 teams medyo balansenaman & worth it pag-aksayahan ng panahon na panoorin.

The cellar-dweller in the league just pulled the rugs under last conference's 1st runner-up placer. Yung JRU/Air21 team ni Aerial Voyagerguma-ganda ang nilalaro. Cagayan Valley has become a very solid team in only its 2nd conference of participation. Blackwater Elite is now a title contender. May isang team pa dyan na although talunan, pogi naman yung coach kaya pwede ring pag-aksayahan ng pamasahe. :) -si Caloy Garcia ang tinutukoy ko pero kung gusto niyo akong ihelera dyan...pwede narin. :)

What are you waiting for?? Sugod na sa mga PBA D-League games. Kita-kits!!!

Sam Miguel
01-24-2013, 08:06 AM
Last semis slot on the line

Cebu Daily News

7:09 am | Thursday, January 24th, 2013

THE last outright semifinals slot is up for grabs today when the surging Cagayan Valley Rising Suns take on the Blackwater Sports in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup at the Trinity University of Asia gym in Quezon City.

Cebuano Eliud Poligrates flaunted his skills once more as he scored 27 points while Chris Exciminiano added 23 to lead the Suns to a, 107-75 win over the Fruitas Shakers to set this crucial game up.

The winner of this 4 p.m. showdown will earn the number two seeding and a direct passage to the Final Four.

Top seed and defending champion NLEX Road Warriors clinched the first outright semi-final spot by finishing the elimination round with a 9-1 [win-loss] record.

In the first game at 2 p.m, Cebuana Lhuiullier [3-5] also go for a crucial win against bottom-dweller Informatics to stay in the hunt for a quarterfinals seat.

The struggling Gems, who have lost three of their last four assignments, are hard-pressed to win their last two elimination round matches to make the quarterfinal round.

The Icons [1-8] have long been out of the running but remains dangerous. They are coming off an inspiring, 94-87 breakthrough victory against Big Chill [5-4] last week that snapped an eight-game skid and knocked the Superchargers out from contention for an outright semi-final berth. /Correspondent Jonas Panerio

Sam Miguel
01-30-2013, 08:18 AM
Big Chill, Fruitas keep hopes alive

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

11:14 pm | Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Big Chill arrested a late meltdown while Fruitas banked on Pong Escobal’s huge fourth-quarter game as both squads survived separate thrillers yesterday to keep their quarterfinal hopes alive in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.

Ryan Buenafe and Mar Villahermosa fueled Big Chill’s strong start as the Superchargers tripped Café France, 76-71, to stay in the hunt for the twice-to-beat quarterfinal bonus with a 6-4 record.

Buenafe and Villahermosa had 14 points each to lift the Superchargers to leads by as many as 21 points, 46-25, before spearheading another end-game effort when the Bakers trimmed their advantage to just four points, 61-65.

In the second game, Escobal exploded for 20 points in the final quarter as the Shakers rallied to a 73-61 victory over Boracay Rum. ...

“We were able to find ways to win,” said coach Nash Racela after Fruitas improved to 5-5 even minus injured center Ola Adeogun. “Our lineup heavily relies on Ola, Carlo (Lastimosa) and Pong, so with one guy out, it was hard.” ...

Both Café France and Boracay Rum bowed out of contenction with 4-6 cards. ...

The scores:

First Game

BIG CHILL 76–Buenafe 14, Villahermosa 14, Bringas 9, Canlas 8, Montilla 7, Brondial 6, Collado 6, Semira 5, Lozada 3, Santos 2, Nuyles 2, Holstein 0.

CAFE FRANCE 71–Jamon 16, Lopez 13, Parala 11, Pogoy 10, Batino 6, Gallardo 5, Dela Cruz 5, Knuttel 3, Mendoza 2, Saitanan 0, Magbitang 0, Antipuesto 0.

Quarters: 21-12, 47-28, 64-53, 76-71

Second Game

FRUITAS 73—Escobal 22, Colina 13, Lastimosa 9, Dela Rosa 7, Caram 4, Silungan 4, Terso 4, Antonio 4, Mendoza 2. Belleza 2, Escueta 2, Pascual 0.

BORACAY RUM 61—Sabellina 14, Cabrera 10, Siruma 9, Eguilos 8, Viernes 7, Ilagan 6, Arellano 3, Monteclaro 2, Taha 2, Acibar 0, Bandaying 0.

Quarters: 13-19, 33-29, 47-51, 73-61

02-07-2013, 10:55 AM
Momentum on side of Gems, Bombers

(The Philippine Star) | Updated February 7, 2013 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Cagayan Valley and Big Chill try to recover lost grounds while Cebuana Lhuillier and Jose Rizal University seek to complete a pair reversals in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup quarterfinal round at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig today.

The fifth-seeded Heavy Bombers nipped the No. 4 Superchargers, 63-61, while the sixth-seeded Gems edged No. 3 Rising Suns, 84-83, last Tuesday to force a pair of sudden deaths for last two semifinal berths.

But while JRU and Cebuana have gained the so-called momentum with their thrilling wins the other day, the Superchargers and the Rising Suns are expected to bounce back strong and join defending champion NLEX and No. 2 Blackwater Sports in the Final Four.

Big Chill and JRU dispute the third semis berth at 2 p.m. while Cagayan and Cebuana clash for the last semis seat at 4 p.m.

“The guys are determined to win. What we achieved (Tuesday) will motivate them even more,” said JRU coach Vergel Meneses after the Heavy Bombers bucked the odds and humbled the Superchargers.

“We struggled with our offense and we didn’t execute our plays smoothly. I think we have to make few adjustments. But the bottom line really is defense. The team which wants it more will win,” he added.

The Heavy Bombers hope to draw the best from John Villarias, Jeckster Apinan and Philip Paniamogan this time after the troika struggled for a combined 10-point output last Tuesday.

The Superchargers, meanwhile, hope to check their skid after losing four of their last six games in the elims and to the Bombers in the quarters.

For the third straight game, Big Chill will be without the injured Terrence Romeo, out for three weeks due to a hairline fracture in his right hands he sustained in their 87-94 loss to Informatics last Jan. 17.

“I think it will be a game of character. The team that is willing to go the extra mile will go to the semis. I thought we showed some character,” said Cebuana Lhuillier coach Beaujing Acot following their come-from-behind win last Tuesday.

The Rising Suns actually dominated the Gems in the first half but struggled at resumption, enabling their rivals to mount a rally and steal the game.

But Christopher Eximiniano, Raymund Almazan and Mark Bringas vow to atone for their poor finish the last time out and help carry the Rising Suns to the semis.

Sam Miguel
02-08-2013, 08:49 AM
Cagayan eliminates Cebuana Lhuillier, completes PBA D-League semis cast

By Celest R. Flores


8:45 pm | Thursday, February 7th, 2013

MANILA, Philippines—Cagayan Valley shrugged off last Tuesday’s defeat with an 88-73 win over Cebuana Lhuillier on Thursday to complete the semifinal cast of the PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.

Guard Eliud Poligrates made up for his listless performance last Tuesday and finished with 16 points for the Rising Suns, who faces Blackwater in the semifinals next week.

Poligrates had a big second quarter to lead the Rising Suns, scattering 11 of his totals points as he went 3-of-4 from behind the arc and 2-for-2 from the line.

James Forrester and Mark Bringas had 15 points apiece while Adrian Celeda chipped in 10 for Cagayan, which has erased the memory of a 0-9 finish last conference.

The Gems, who forced the rubber match by beating the Rising Suns 84-83 on Tuesday, meanwhile, just couldn’t muster the same intensity this time.

James Martinez scored 13 points and Rex Leynes had 11 for the Gems, who were doomed by their poor shooting in the first half.

Sam Miguel
02-08-2013, 08:49 AM
Air21-JRU beats Big Chill twice to enter PBA D-League semis

By Celest R. Flores


5:26 pm | Thursday, February 7th, 2013

MANILA, Philippines—Air21-Jose Rizal University neutralized Big Chill’s twice-to-beat edge with an 80-71 clincher of a win on Thursday for a spot in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup semifinals at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.

Dexter Maiquez churned out 18 points, Byron Villarias added 12, as the Heavy Bombers — despite the tougher road after their last loss in the eliminations — still managed to reach the final four.

Air21-JRU escaped Big Chill, 63-61, in their first meeting in the quarterfinals last Tuesday.

A drive from Villarias with 3:38 left in the third quarter gave the Heavy Bombers the lead after a tight start, and they never looked back from there.

Anthony Del Rio, who added nine points, gave JRU a 68-54 lead — the biggest of the game — on two freethrows with four minutes left to play.

Alex Nuyles, who only suited up for Big Chill in latter part of the conference, scored a game-high 21 points while Arvie Bringas added 14.

From last conference’s finalists, the Superchargers had inconsistent Aspirants’ Cup overall and eventually led to their early demise.

Sam Miguel
02-12-2013, 08:56 AM
NLEX tries to continue winning ways as PBA D-League semis starts

Cebu Daily News

7:35 am | Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

THE ACTION intensifies in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup as the semifinal round commences with the nearly untouchable NLEX Road Warriors taking on the Jose Rizal University Heavy Bombers while the Blackwater Elite Sports battles the surprising Cagayan Valley Rising Suns today at the Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig City.

JRU head coach Vergel Meneses thoroughly downplayed his team’s chances against the two-time defending champions Road Warriors, a veritable collection of amateur all-stars that snatched an outright ticket to the semis with a lot of time to spare in the elimination round.

JRU, on the other hand, had to overhaul a twice-to-beat disadvantage against Big Chill in the quarterfinal round to get to this point.

“We don’t stand a chance. Their lineup is so deep, anyone can be a starter. I don’t think we can match-up with them,” Meneses said. “But we’ll give it a shot. I’m confident my players will compete. Hopefully, our success in the quarterfinals could make a difference in this series.”

The other semis pairing will see the Elite face off against the Suns, which has turned heads all conference long with their Cinderella-like run to this Final Four, especially after their last stint in the D-League, wherein they finished without a single win in nine games.

However, it will be an uphill battle against the Elite after the latter knocked them off, 93-70, in their lone encounter in the prelims. /Correspondent Jonas Panerio

Sam Miguel
02-13-2013, 08:26 AM
NLEX, Cagayan near title slots

R. Warriors, Rising Suns win big

12:56 am | Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez need not worry of his team’s two-month layoff after all.

Flashing their firepower from the get-go, NLEX rolled past Jose Rizal University, 105-85, yesterday to move within a win of a return trip to the finals in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup at Ynares Sports Arena.

“We haven’t practiced for a long time together, but (the players) stepped up and played as a team,” Fernandez said of the three-time champions, who saw action for the first time since December because half of the team suited up for the national squad.

Cagayan Valley also came out sizzling early for a 91-76 upset win over No. 2 seed Blackwater Sports in the other pairing of the best-of-three semifinal series.

James Forrester showcased his scoring arsenal—from a 360-degree dunk to a perfect 3-of-3 from three-point range in the first half—before finishing with a game-high 25 points for the Rising Suns.

The Road Warriors built a 15-point lead, 26-11, in the first quarter and stayed beyond reach the rest of the way with 20-point buffers.

Nico Salva shot 17 points while Ian Sangalang buried all but two of his 14 points in the Road Warriors’ strong first quarter.

Raymond Almazan had a double-double of 18 points and 17 rebounds, while Eliud Poligrates, who added 16 points and six assists, helped the Rising Suns stay comfortably ahead in the second half.

“We don’t want to waste the opportunity, so we grabbed it,” coach Alvin Pua said after his Rising Suns, who had a winless stint last conference, inched closer to a championship berth.

The scores:

First Game

CAGAYAN VALLEY 91—Forrester 25, Almazan 18, Poligrates 16, Exciminano 9, Lao 8, Webb 4, Melano 4, Bringas 4, Canta 3, Pasculado 0, Celada 0.

BLACKWATER SPORTS 76—Ferrer 14, Mangahas 12, Chua 11, Abdul 9, Celiz 7, Vigil 5, Fortuna 5, Mazo 4, Pe 3, Llagas 3, Ciriacruz G. 3, Ciriacruz I 0.

Quarters: 16-20, 47-41, 72-60, 91-76

Second Game

NLEX 105—Salva 17, Sangalang 14, Garcia 12, Alas 11, Slaughter 10, Camson 10, Pascual 6, Long 6, Sumalinog 6, Lanete 6. Amer 5, Hermida 2.

JRU-AIR21 85—Villarias 21, Maiquez 12, Paniamogan 10, Del Rio 9, Apinan 8, Almario 7, Ighalo 7, Pinto 6, Mabulac 3, Caperal 2, Mirza 0, Lopez 0, Miranda 0.

Quarters: 26-13, 51-24, 73-51, 105-85

Sam Miguel
02-15-2013, 08:15 AM
JRU, Blackwater forge rubber tiffs

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

11:03 pm | Thursday, February 14th, 2013

Jose Rizal University didn’t stand a chance, it seemed, against three-time champion NLEX just three days ago.

Rebounding from a 30-point blowout loss in Game 1, the Heavy Bombers shocked the Road Warriors, 108-94, yesterday to forge a rubber match for a championship berth in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup.

Blackwater Sports also pushed its own series to a Game 3 as the Elite downed Cagayan Valley, 86-79, in Game 2 of the other best-of-three semifinals at Ynares Sports Arena.

“The adjustment was more on (applying) the defensive pressure, unlike in Game 1 where we allowed them to do anything they wanted,” said coach Leo Isaac after his Elite rose from their Game 1 setback, 76-91, against the Rising Suns.

The Bombers jumped to a 12-1 start and had everything going for them the rest of the way as they built double-digit leads of as many as 16 points, 48-32.

“We had a good start,” said JRU coach Vergel Meneses after his Bombers recovered from a lopsided 85-105 loss to the Road Warriors last Tuesday. “We didn’t do anything different, they just played with heart.”

Game 3 is set Tuesday with the winners of both series advancing to a best-of-three finals.

John Byron Villarias fired 24 points, half coming from three-point range, and dished out five assists to lead the Bombers in dealing NLEX only its second loss of the season.

Also coming out with huge games were Philip Paniamogan (20 points), Dexter Maiquez (20 points and 10 rebounds) and John Pinto (16 points and five assists).

Justine Chua paced the Elite with 16 points and Rob Celiz added 12, including six in the last four minutes that kept them ahead, 81-72, after the Rising Suns moved within, 75-70.

The Bombers wrapped up the first quarter on top, 28-17, as the Road Warriors struggled with a 28.6 percent (4-of-14) shooting clip.

In one of the Road Warriors’ repeated rallies in the second half, the virtual all-star amateur squad came within four points, 74-78, behind Greg Slaughter and Kevin Alas.

The scores:

First Game

JRU-AIR21 108—Villarias 24, Paniamogan 20, Maiquez 20, Pinto 16, Mirza 10, Apinan 7, Mabulac 6, Lopez 2, Del Rio 2, Ighalo 1, Almario 0.

NLEX 94—Slaughter 15, Alas 15, Sangalang 13, Garcia 12, Long 11, Sumalinog 7, Camson 5, Lanete 5, Salva 4, Pascual 4, Amer 3, Hermida 0.

Quarters: 28-17, 48-39, 76-68, 108-94

Second Game

BLACKWATER SPORTS 86—Chua 16, Celiz 12, Abdul 10, Ferrer 10, Mangahas 9, Llagas 9, Bagatsing 7, Vigil 5, Fortuna 4, Ciriacruz I. 4, Ciriacruz G. 0.

CAGAYAN VALLEY 79—Poligrates 23, Exciminiano 15, Lao 11, Celada 9, Forrester 7, Bringas 6, Almazan 4, Pasculado 2, Webb 2, Canta 0, Villanil 0, Melano 0.

Quarters: 22-19, 44-40, 67-60, 86-79

Sam Miguel
02-19-2013, 08:47 AM
2 KO games cap D-League semis today

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

11:21 pm | Monday, February 18th, 2013

Defending champion NLEX tries to avoid what seemed improbable all season long.

On the brink of elimination, the Road Warriors hope to rise to the challenge and nail a title berth against the upset-conscious Jose Rizal University Bombers in the deciding Game 3 of their semifinal duel in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.

“Definitely, the pressure is on their side,” said JRU coach Vergel Meneses after his Bombers stunned the three-time champions, 108-94, in Game 2 to drag the series to a do-or-die contest.
“We have nothing to lose in this semifinals and everything to gain.”

Gametime is 4 p.m. with the Road Warriors still favored to rebound from just their second loss of the season.

Blackwater Sports and Cagayan Valley dispute the championship berth in the other semifinal encounter that’s too tight to call.

The winners of the two games will advance to the best-of-three finals starting Thursday.

The Road Warriors try to make some adjustments following the shocking loss that came just two days after their 20-point crushing of the Bombers, 105-85, in Game 1.

“JRU came out with a lot of energy [in Game 2],” said NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez.

In Game 2, the Bombers got out of the gates on a 12-1 spurt and never looked back as John Byron Villarias (24 points), Philip Paniamogan (20 points), Dexter Maiquez (20 points and 10 rebounds) and John Pinto (16 points and five assists) all came out with huge games.

“This is an overachieving team,” said Meneses. “Nobody expected us to be in the quarters, nobody expected us to be in the semis.”

The Road Warriors hope to bring back their fine form in the series opener where collegiate stars Nico Salva, RR Garcia, Greg Slaughter, Ian Sangalang and Kevin Alas delivered.

Blackwater coach Leo Isaac said his Elite, who tied the best-of-three series at 1-1 with an 86-79 Game 2 triumph last Thursday, need to sustain their strong defensive game.

“Our major adjustment in Game 2 was our defense,” said Isaac, who is leaning on Kevin Ferrer, Jeric Fortuna and Karim Abdul.

The Rising Suns stunned the favored Elite in Game 1 with an emphatic 91-76 victory.

Sam Miguel
02-20-2013, 09:57 AM
NLEX, Cagayan fives clinch title berths

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

12:28 am | Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

NLEX survived a Jose Rizal University squad that kept battling back to book a ticket to the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup finals.

Kevin Alas and Ian Sangalang carried the scoring load and Kirk Long made a key block in the dying seconds as the Road Warriors escaped the Bombers, 87-85, in the thrilling winner-take-all Game 3 of the semifinals yesterday at Filoil Flying V Arena.

“It’s a relief to be able to get past JRU,” NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez said after his three-time champions nearly saw their reign come to an end against the hot-shooting Bombers.

The Road Warriors face an unlikely finalist in Cagayan Valley, which completed its upset of No. 2 Blackwater Sports with an 80-68 victory in the other knockout semifinal duel.

Eliud Poligrates, Joshua Webb and Mark Bringas fueled a strong second half where the Rising Suns led by as many as 15 points, 76-61.

“I’m very happy since this is our first time in the finals,” said Cagayan coach Alvin Pua.

Game 1 of the title series is set at 3 p.m. tomorrow at Blue Eagle Gym in Ateneo.

Alas fired all but two of his 19 points in the second half and Sangalang shot eight of his 14 in the last four minutes to keep NLEX afloat against JRU.

John Byron Villarias and Anthony Del Rio towed JRU to within 84-85, but Ronald Pascual nailed two free throws with 9.8 ticks left to keep the Road Warriors ahead, 87-84.

After a Khasim Mirza free throw made it 87-85, Villarias—who shot 21 of his 25 points from three-point range—tried to seal the major upset but Long foiled his potential game-winning triple in the dying seconds.

The scores:

First Game

CAGAYAN 80—Poligrates 17, Webb 11, Bringas 11, Celada 10, Lao 9, Almazan 8, Exciminiano 7, Melano 5, Cruz 2, Pasculado 0, Forrester 0, Montemayor 0.

BLACKWATER 68—Ferrer 18, Celiz 12, Llagas 11, Mangahas 10, Chua 8, Bagatsing 2, Abdul 2, Vigil 2, Fortuna 2, Ciriacruz G. 1,Pe 0, Ciriacruz I. 0.

Quarters: 21-15, 35-40, 57-54, 80-68

Second Game

NLEX 87—Alas 19, Sangalang 14, Pascual J. 13, Pascual R. 11, Camson 9, Salva 7, Sumalinog 4, Lanete 4, Long 3, Hermida 3, Amer 0, Garcia 0.

JRU-AIR 21 85—Villarias 25, Pinto 15, Maiquez 15, Del Rio 13, Mirza 10, Mabulac 6, Paniamogan 1, Lopez 0, Almario 0, Ighalo 0, Miranda 0, Apinan 0.

Quarters: 19-15, 40-32, 64-57, 87-85

Sam Miguel
02-20-2013, 09:58 AM
^^^ JRU is that strong? Or is it because of the non-JRU players on that roster? Although in fairness that friggin' Byron Villarias is really something else.

Sam Miguel
02-20-2013, 10:16 AM
Streak-shooting Bomber runs out of ammunition

By Mei-Lin Lozada

February 19, 2013, 07:12 pm

IT was a matter of luck finally running out on Jose Rizal University gunner Byron Villarias.

After exploding for six three-point shots in the fourth quarter and sparking a huge Bombers comeback from 11 points down, the streak shooting guard finally ran smack on a brick wall after his potential game-winning trey in the final three seconds was blocked by Kirk Long, allowing defending champion NLEX to book a return trip to the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup Finals Tuesday.

“Tira lang ng tira,” Villarias, nephew of former PBA players Vernie and Victor and an uncle of Ateneo star Kiefer Ravena, said after exploding for 25 points while going 7-of-12 from beyond the arc in a losing cause.

“Sabi ko sa sarili ko, kapag may open shot ititira ko lang.”

That’s exactly what he did, nailing down six three-pointers to rally Jose Rizal from 48-59 down to within 81-83 with a minute and 48 seconds left in its do-or-die encounter with NLEX.

“Kumpiyansa naman ako na papasok (ang bola), kailangan ko din kasi mag-take charge,” added the JRU shooting guard, who once scored a league-record 36 points in a merciless 100-64 blowout of Fruitas.

Villarias said he owed the scoring explosion to his teammates for giving him the space to operate and pick his shots.

“Binibigyan naman kasi nila (teammates) ako ng magandang screen kaya din ako nakakatira ng ganoon,” he said.

Then again the well dried up in the end.

“Nung bandang huli naubos na yung swerte,” he said.

Sam Miguel
02-20-2013, 10:19 AM
^^^ I don't know who's the bigger idiot: Byron Villarias for attributing shooting he practices every day more to luck than skill, or the writer of this friggin' piece buying it and making a story out of it.

For godsakes, did we all watch the same game? I'm pretty sure Villarias was squared for his shots, had the space to operate as he correctly pointed out above, and nailed shots he's made throughout his young career. What the hell does luck, or its running out therof, have anything to do with this? Hirap talaga sa mga bagong writers...

Sam Miguel
02-21-2013, 07:48 AM
NLEX starts bid for 4th straight title vs Cagayan

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

11:26 pm | Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

After surviving a grueling semifinal series, NLEX takes on another gutsy opponent at the start of the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup championship today.

So the Road Warriors know they have to toughen up yet again versus a confident Cagayan Valley side in Game 1 of the best-of-three finals at 3 p.m. today at the Blue Eagle Gym in Ateneo.

“We’re up against an energetic team, a no-holds barred team that plays hard every game,” said NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez. “We have to match their energy.”

The Rising Suns remarkably turned their campaign around after a winless stint just last conference. And it’s this unexpected run that fuels the Rising Suns’ bid to foil the Road Warriors’ quest for a fourth straight title.

Leading the Rising Suns’ pumped-up performances is Eliud Poligrates—the Cebuano guard who was a virtual unknown before the conference—who averaged 18.6 points, 4.3 assists and 1.3 steals in the Final Four.

“When we built this team, we really got players who were hardly used by their former teams,” said Cagayan coach Alvin Pua. “We know they’ll play with heart because they have something to prove.”

The Road Warriors are overflowing with talent, with half the team even suiting up for the Smart Gilas Pilipinas cadet team.

But Fernandez said that the talent of an all-star cast led by Nico Salva, RR Garcia, Kevin Alas, Ian Sangalang, Kirk Long and Greg Slaughter won’t be enough.

“We have the talent, but we have to continue working on our defense,” said Fernandez.

Sam Miguel
02-22-2013, 09:13 AM
NLEX regains vaunted form, whips Cagayan

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

11:19 pm | Thursday, February 21st, 2013

NLEX looks invincible again. And it picked the right time to do so.

Pushed to the brink of elimination in the semifinals, the Road Warriors regained their old dominating form and crushed Cagayan Valley, 87-63, yesterday to move within a win of a fourth straight PBA D-League championship.

The Road Warriors jumped to a 22-12 start and just kept pouncing on the Rising Suns, who failed to get the usual fire from their reliables in Game 1 of the Aspirants Cup finals at the Blue Eagle Gym in Ateneo.

Ian Sangalang dropped 15 points and grabbed eight rebounds to lead the relentless charge of NLEX’s all-star crew.

“We just came in and matched their energy,” said NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez. “We started well, so maybe that’s why their (Rising Suns) energy dipped.”

Game 2 of the best-of-three series is set at 3 p.m. on Tuesday at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.

Before the championship series started, NLEX looked like a team that was ripe for an upset. The Road Warriors looked vulnerable after narrowly escaping Jose Rizal University, 87-85, in the do-or-die Game 3 semifinals last Tuesday.

And Cagayan Valley certainly looked primed to play giant-slayer, having knocked out favored No. 2 seed Blackwater in their half of the semifinal bracket.

But Sangalang and starting guards Garvo Lanete and Borgie Hermida got the Warriors off to a strong first half where they led by 14 points, 49-35, at the break.

The erstwhile fiery crew of the Rising Suns, meanwhile, failed to sustain their semifinal brilliance with Eliud Poligrates, who topscored with 15, held to a 4-of-12 shooting from the field.

The Road Warriors floored the pedal in the third, using a 17-7 run to stretch the gap to 24 points, 66-42, getting balanced contributions from their all-star roster.

Greg Slaughter, sidelined in the last semifinal game due to a shoulder injury, came back with 11 points for the Road Warriors, who had a 50.8 shooting clip percentage from the field. Nico Salva, Hermida and Lanete added 10 markers each.

“This is only one game, we still have to wrap it up,” Fernandez said of his Road Warriors, the only champion the league has known since its inception in 2011.

The scores:

NLEX 87—Sangalang 15, Slaughter 11, Salva 10, Hermida 10, Lanete 10, Long 9, Garcia 6, Amer 5, Pascual J. 4, Ganuelas 2, Alas 2, Sumalinog 2, Camson 1, Pascual R. 0.

CAGAYAN VALLEY 63—Poligrates 15, Webb 11, Bringas 11, Almazan 8, Lao 7, Forrester 4, Exciminiano 4, Celada 3, Pasculado 0, Canta 0, Melano 0, Montemayor 0.

Quarters: 26-21, 49-35, 70-46, 87-63

Sam Miguel
02-26-2013, 08:46 AM
Road Warriors aim for sweep of Rising Suns

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

9:50 pm | Monday, February 25th, 2013

A seemingly invincible NLEX squad tries to go for a familiar ending in the PBA D-League Aspirants Cup today.

The Roads Warriors, who swept the finals in all their title runs, again hope to dispatch Cagayan Valley quickly and claim a fourth straight championship in Game 2 of the best-of-three series.

But NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez expects a tough fightback from the Rising Suns, the surprise finalist who did come out looking surprised in the series opener.

“I’m sure they’ll make some adjustments so we better be ready,” said Fernandez.

Game time is set at 3 p.m. at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.

The Road Warriors cruised past the Rising Suns in Game 1, 87-63, last Thursday where Ian Sangalang, Greg Slaughter, Nico Salva, Borgie Hermida and Garvo Lanete all came out with double figures.

Cagayan coach Alvin Pua, though, thinks his Risings Suns are still capable of regaining the same fiery form that keyed their upset of No. 2 Blackwater Sports in the semifinals.

“We need to be a lot more aggressive and move the ball well to create open shots for our shooters,” said Pua.

Eliud Poligrates led with 15 points in a game where the Rising Suns virtually struggled from the field (22-of-68) the entire time as reliables like Chris Exciminiano and James Forrester finished with only four points apiece.

“We just didn’t make our shots and that’s more or less the story of Game 1,” said Pua, who added that his Rising Suns also played lackluster defense.

In contrast, the Road Warriors had everything going for them from the get-go as starters Sangalang (15 points and eight rebounds), Lanete (10 points) and Hermida (10 points and 11 assists) towed them to a double-digit lead early.

Still, Fernandez tried to be cautious in proclaiming another sweep for the only champion since the league inception two years ago.

“We just won one game,” he said. “This series is not over until it’s over.”

02-27-2013, 07:54 AM
The D-League better start adopting measures soon to promote parity. Seeing the same team win the championship in lopsided fashion isn't good for the league and isn't what fans or advertisers want. I haven't watched a D-League game since the inaugural year because you already know who'll win by just looking at N-LEX's powerhouse lineup. Boooring...

Sam Miguel
02-27-2013, 11:26 AM
Wow, NLEX wins another D League title, what a shocker!

I wonder how the reporters keep from sleeping on the job covering this league...?

Road Warriors cruise to 4th title

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

12:00 am | Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

The league’s virtual all-star team again proved to be all that.

NLEX got off to a blistering start and kept Cagayan Valley at bay the rest of the way as the Road Warriors took Game 2 with an 82-71 triumph yesterday to capture a fourth straight PBA D-League championship.

“There are so many stories in every championship,” said NLEX coach Boyet Fernandez. “We couldn’t practice as a complete team because some of our players had commitments to Gilas (national team) and their schools. We had injuries, we had issues to settle. So this is a sweet victory after all those times we had problems.”

With a collection of amateur stars led by Most Valuable Player Ian Sangalang, the Road Warriors again came out as one intimidating unit to complete a 2-0 sweep of the best-of-three Aspirants Cup finals series at Filoil Flying V Arena.

Garvo Lanete fueled the Road Warriors’ hot start, knocking in 14 of his 17 points in the first half on top of seven rebounds and three assists.

Fellow guard Borgie Hermida added 10 markers and six assists, while star centers Greg Slaughter and Sangalang teamed up for 18 points.

The Road Warriors—who never lost a finals game in all four title runs—also had Jake Pascual, Kirk Long and Ronald Pascual coming through in stretches in the second half when the Rising Suns found a bit of their old fire.

“Everyone’s saying that we’ll win the championship on paper,” said Sangalang, who’s also the reigning NCAA MVP. “So there was pressure because we had to prove that. We really worked hard.”

Just like in their decisive 87-63 Game 1 victory last Thursday, the Road Warriors surged ahead with an 11-0 start that grew to a 17-point gap, 19-2, with still four minutes left in the first quarter.

And it seemed nothing went right for the Rising Suns early as head coach Alvin Pua also got thrown out midway in the second period for physically assaulting a referee while complaining on an alleged non-call.

Hoping to make the ejection a rallying point, the Rising Suns did start to get their rhythm behind Eliud Poligrates after a forgettable opening quarter where the team shot a paltry 28.6 percent from the field.

“It (Pua’s ejection) was a big factor in terms of our energy,” said Fernandez. “When he got thrown out, our players thought it was all over. So I had to scold them at halftime.”

Poligrates, who fired a game-high 21 points, towed the Rising Suns within seven points, 54-61, early in the fourth quarter after trailing by a many as 18 points, 18-36.

But that was the closest the Rising Suns could get as Sangalang, Hermida and Long helped arrest the comeback efforts to put the Road Warriors back up, 77-65, with less than three minutes to go.

“Credit also to Cagayan, from 0-9 to the finals this conference,” Fernandez said of the Rising Suns, who surprisingly reached the title round after a winless run last conference.

Cagayan gunners Chris Exciminiano and James Forrester were also held to four points each, their same output in the Rising Suns’ Game 1 loss.

The scores:

NLEX 82—Lanete 17, Hermida 10, Slaughter 9, Sangalang 9, Pascual J. 8. Long 8, Pascual R. 8, Alas 4, Camson 4, Garcia 3, Salva 2, Amer 0.

CAGAYAN VALLEY 71—Poligrates 21, Bringas 13, Celada 12, Lao 6, Almazan 5, Webb 4, Forrester 4, Exciminiano 4, Cruz 2, Melano 0, Montemayor 0.

Quarters: 24-10, 45-32, 61-50, 82-71

Sam Miguel
02-27-2013, 11:27 AM
^^^ Really, Boyet? You had "problems" and "issues"? Really?

09-18-2013, 10:34 AM
D-League rookie draft set Thursday

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

12:51 am | Tuesday, September 17th, 2013

The PBA D-League Rookie Draft is set Thursday with 143 players hoping to strut their wares in the fourth season starting Oct. 24 at Ynares Sports Arena.

Café France, which owns the No. 1 pick, is expected to select Filipino-Italian guard Chris Banchero in the 2 p.m. proceedings at the PBA office in Libis, Quezon City.

Banchero, who starred in San Miguel Beer’s title romp in the Asean Basketball League recently, leads 27 foreigners with Filipino roots who signed up for the draft.

Second-generation players Jerrold Nielsen Asaytono, son of former PBA star Nelson Asaytono, and Joma Adornado, son of three-time PBA MVP Bogs Adornado, also submitted their names along with players from various collegiate leagues.

Cebuana Lhuillier will choose second, followed by Boracay Rum, Big Chill, Blackwater Sports, NLEX, Cagayan Valley, Hog’s Breath and Jumbo Plastic.

The PBA requires foreign players with Filipino roots aged 25 and below to play at least two conferences in its developmental tournament.

09-18-2013, 10:40 AM
Sy family on PBA doorstep with move to field NU Bulldogs team in D-League

From: Snow Badua
September 17, 2013, 08:29 pm

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Sy family on PBA doorstep with move to field NU Bulldogs team in D-League
Hans Sy has turned the NU Bulldogs from perennial doormats to title contenders in the UAAP and are set to stage the first NBA preseason game in the country at the Mall of Asia Arena, which now hosts some of the biggest events in the sports calendar. Jerome Ascano

THE SM Group of Companies has just moved a step closer to the PBA.

The giant corporation owned by the Sy family has formalized its entry into the commercial basketball scene with the inclusion of the Banco De Oro team in the PBA D-League.

Team manager Fullton Sy confirmed BDO's entry in the developmental league, saying it is the SM group's way of giving their players from National University the needed exposure in high-level competition during the UAAP offseason.

“Bayad na kami. We’re participating in the coming D-League tourney,” said Sy. BDO's entry as the newest team in the D-League has yet to be announced by PBA officials.

“We just want to give our boys a team in the D-League, sharpen them more in higher level competitions,” added Sy, a family friend of the Sys.

“Our players have been requesting for the formation of a D-League team from us. So instead na kanya-kanyang team sila, we decided to form one for them.”

Under the plan, the NU Bulldogs team to be led by two-time UAAP MVP Bobby Ray Parks will carry the colors of Banco De Oro in the coming PBA D-League Aspirants Cup which is set to open on October 24.

Both BDO and NU are owned by the family of Henry Sy, who is listed by Forbes magazine as the country's richest man.

Sy, however, was non-committal when asked if the D-League participation will bring the Sy family a step closer to fielding a team in the pro league, in direct competition with other giant companies like PLDT and San Miguel Corp.

“I think that’s too early to talk about pa,” said Sy, who let out a laugh when told that basketball fans have long been waiting for the company to join the PBA ranks.

“Wow, it’s flattering to know. Pero you know, hindi pa napapag-usapan yan,” he said.

The BDO team manager, however, said the sons of company patriarch Henry Sy are very much into sports.

The Sys have turned the Bulldogs from perennial doormats to title contenders in the UAAP and are set to stage the first NBA preseason game in the country at the Mall of Asia Arena, which now hosts some of the biggest events in the sports calendar.

[For full story, see Original plan was to bring NBA regular-season game to country, says Sy]

“Yes, mahilig sa sports 'yung mga 'yun. They played basketball pa nga when they were young,” he said, who bared that NU big boss Hans Sy, one of the taipan's sons, is an active sportsman who plays basketball, baseball, volleyball and golf.

Asked if the young Sy’s passion for sports can push the SM Group of Companies towards a deeper commitment in basketball, the soft-spoken BDO official nodded but refused to speculate.

“Sa ngayon pakiramdaman muna tayo. Sa ngayon talaga, play it by ear muna kami as to what will happen in our campaign,” said Sy. “This is our first venture into commercial sports.

“D-League is a big league naman. It’s popular, I don’t see anything wrong participating here … Everything will be advantageous I guess both for BDO and our NU players,” he added.

“We have to see first how we fare in the D-League. Let’s not look further ahead.”

Follow the writer on Twitter: @snowbadua

09-19-2013, 10:28 AM
D-League draft today; Banchero going to Boracay Rum

By Jasmine W. Payo

Philippine Daily Inquirer

2:18 am | Thursday, September 19th, 2013

Boracay Rum will get to acquire topnotch guard Chris Banchero after all as the two teams set to pick first in the PBA D-League Rookie Draft today ceded their rights due to tie-ups with separate schools.

In a late development, Café France linked up with Centro Escolar University and automatically gave up its right to chose first.

Cebuana Lhuiller also relinquished its right to choose second following a recent tie-up with University of the East.

“He’s definitely the top of his class,” Boracay Rum coach Lawrence Chongson said of Banchero, the Filipino-Italian guard who starred in San Miguel Beer’s championship romp in the Asean Basketball League (ABL) this year.

“We won’t waste this chance given to us.”

A total of 143 players signed up for the developmental league’s maiden draft set at 2 p.m. at the PBA office in Libis, Quezon City.

Big Chill will pick next, followed by Blackwater Sports, Cagayan Valley, Hog’s Breath and Jumbo Plastic.

Four-time champion NLEX will also skip the first round due to its tie-up with San Beda College.

Four of the five new teams this season will hook up with collegiate teams, including Banco de Oro (BDO) with National University, Ur Value with University of the Philippines, Air21 with Arellano and M-Builders with Trinity University.

The order of selection for the debuting teams, including Wangs, will be determined by lottery before the draft.

Banchero, the ABL Finals MVP, leads the 27 foreigners with Filipino roots who submitted their names for the draft.