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Monday, February 7, 2011

PBA: Teams Line-up for D-League Inaugural Tourney

THE inaugural PBA Developmental League tournament kicks off next month with participants sure to be more than what organizers pegged as “ideal.”

In Monday’s well-attended organizational meeting, at least three teams have already confirmed their intention to join and more are sure to follow suit before the Feb. 15 deadline issued by the PBA.

Representatives of the Manny V. Pangilinan-controlled Maynilad and Metro Pacific Tollways and the Powerade-backed University of the Philippines have confirmed their participation in the inaugurals tentatively slated March 15 to June 9.

Bernard Yang of Hapee Toothpaste and Patrick Aquino of Ever Bilena were also resent, with each expressing their intention to confirm their own respective participation.

Also in attendance were Avelino Relucio of PC Gilmore, Riley Winpeco of Handyfix/Max Bond, Roman Ong of Ani-FCA and Bimbo Gaviola and Kenneth Duremdes of Pacific Pipes.

Those who did not make it were representatives of Toyota-Otis and the Cebu-based Cebuana Lhuillier and M. Lhuillier.

Ang maganda kasi dito sa D-League, P300,000 lang ang franchise fee at around P2 million lang ang maintenance ng team. Hamak ang kamurahan sa ibang liga,” said Yang, who managed the Teeth Sparklers in the PBL.

The D-League is being put up as honing ground for future pro players and the PBA has also came up with other ways to make it easier and cheaper for those who are interested to join.

The PBA had initially pegged the ideal number of participants to be from six to eight teams.

Teams backed by their PBA counterparts, such as Maynilad, Metro Pacific and Powerade-UP do not need to pay any franchise fee while those linking up with any pro squad need only fork over P150,000.

In the meeting at the PBA office in Libis, Quezon City, PBA commissioner Chito Salud first explained to the parties the benefits of joining before handing the floor over to Operations chief Rickie Santos and Special Assistant Willie Marcial, who both outlined the projected tournament format and rules.

If the final list of participants is pegged at eight teams or less, there will be Tuesday and Thursday doubleheaders per week. However, if the number goes beyond nine, Saturday doubleheaders will also be included.

For sure, one playdate will be on a fixed venue and another day on a rotating basis on different Metro Manila campuses.

The teams are free to choose players aged 17 to 26 and, for those who want to, teams are free to recruit from anywhere they want.

All players who wish to join the PBA Annual Draft must have seen action in the D-League before they are given the go-signal to be part of the Draft pool. Starting next year, Fil-foreign players must have played in at least four D-League conferences to be eligible for the PBA Draft. Local players, for their part, have to play in the D-League for at least one conference.

source: PBA

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