Philippine basketball

PBA reverts to 3-conference format, mulls expansion to 14 teams

Delfin Dioquino
PBA reverts to 3-conference format, mulls expansion to 14 teams

WINNING TRADITION. Barangay Ginebra looks to continue its winning ways going into the 47th season after ruling three of the last four PBA conferences.

PBA Images

The PBA staged just three conferences combined over the last two seasons due to the pandemic

MANILA, Philippines – The PBA has big plans for the future as it tries to bounce back from its losses from the pandemic.

PBA chairman Ricky Vargas said the league will revert to its three-conference format next season after staging just three conferences combined over the last two seasons.

“We’re trying to recover. During the pandemic, we lost about P100 million,” said Vargas in a virtual press conference on Wednesday, May 4.

“In the 46th season, we played two conferences, we netted about P48.8 million. Not bad. It is a very positive news for us.”

A potential league expansion to 14 teams is being considered as companies show interest in joining the PBA.

For example, it did not take long for Alaska to sell its franchise in March as Converge officially took over just a month after the Aces announced their retirement from the PBA.

“There is some interest of new teams, new owners coming in to join the PBA. One of them has strong interest to come in,” Vargas said.

Vargas also bared plans by the league to build its own office.

The PBA has been operating from its rented office in Libis, Quezon City.

“When we reviewed the numbers, we pay a lot of money for rental. Where we are now, we will never get to own it,” Vargas said.

After welcoming a new batch of rookies in the upcoming PBA Draft on May 15, the league will open its 47th season with the Philippine Cup on June 5.

The all-Filipino conference will end on September 2 and it will be followed by the Commissioner’s Cup from October 2 to January 25, with the PBA participating in the East Asia Super League during that stretch.

Capping the season off is the Governors’ Cup, which will be staged from February 1 to May 10 next year. –

Delfin Dioquino

Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.