PCBL under way at Pasig Sports Center

MANILA, Philippines – The newly formed Pilipino Commercial Basketball League, offering itself as a transitory league for collegiate players hoping to make the pro league, unwraps tomorrow with a two-game bill at the Pasig Sports Center in Pasig.

Sta. Lucia Realty, returning to the basketball scene after the foldup of its PBA franchise in 2010, plays Kama Motors in the 4 p.m. opening game. Foton and the Caida Tile Masters clash at 6 p.m.

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The Cagayan Rising Suns, Jumbo Plastic, Supremolex and Euro-Med are the other four teams in the fold of the league hoping to take the place of the defunct Philippine Basketball League where Sta. Lucia Realty was among the founding members.

Sta. Lucia’s Buddy Encarnado, prime mover of the PCBL, is the league’s board chair with Ato Badolato as commissioner.

“We want to revive the glory years of commercial league in the time of the old MICAA,” said Encarnado. “We’re not here to compete with any league. We’re here to carve our niche as a transitory league for amateurs aspiring to make the pro league.

Encarnado said all teams are committed to stay in the league at least through 2016 where they would have played three conferences in one full season.

They hold the Founders Cup from October to December and intend to stage an import-reinforced tourney and an invitational tourney next year to complete the PCBL Season 1.

“We’ll tap the African players in the country (playing in the UAAP and NCAA) as imports in the second conference. We hold a draft procedure to get them to our teams,” said Encarnado.

As for the invitationals, Encarnado is eyeing teams from Southeast Asia.

Encarnado said they have drawn the recognition of the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas with their serious intention to play a key role in Philippine basketball.

With the recognition came Pangilinan’s offer to Encarnado to sit on the SBP board.

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