The PBA 3×3 is trying to stand firmly on its own when it comes to game schedules and even the formation of teams that will represent the country in international competitions.
Richard Bachmann, chairman of PBA 3×3, on Tuesday announced the staging of Season 2 beginning on Sept. 10 at Robinson’s Malls in Antipolo, Novaliches, and Malabon.
“We will now have our own schedule which is separate from the PBA schedule,” Bachmann told the online Philippine Sportswriters Association Forum.
PBA 3×3 games will be held Saturdays and Sundays with 12 teams on deck, including in-house teams Ginebra, Blackwater, Cavitex, Meralco, NorthPort, Purefoods, San Miguel Beer, Terrafirma and TNT, and guest teams Pioneer Elasto Seal, Platinum Karaoke, and new guest team J&T Express.
Bachmann, who was joined in the forum by tournament director Joey Guanio and Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas 3×3 program director Ronnie Magsanoc, said they are also planning to be as independent as possible with the formation of national teams.
“That’s the plan. We don’t want to bother the PBA 5×5 anymore,” said Bachmann, adding the PBA already as it is has its hands full with its heavy three-conference schedule and providing players for Gilas Pilipinas.
Magsanoc believes there is no shortage of 3×3 players in the country for local leagues like the PBA as well as international tournaments like FIBA events, Southeast Asian Games, Asian Games, and even the Olympics.
“We will build our own and create a national pool. We’re optimistic in building homegrown talents and eyeing talents from abroad. So far, so good naman,” said the former PBA superstar.
“What’s most important is to sustain the program and the execution,” he added during the forum presented by San Miguel Corporation, MILO, Philippine Sports Commission, Philippine Olympic Committee, Amelie Hotel Manila, Unilever, and the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation.
Bachmann said they are trying to convince local players that the PBA 3×3 is a “very viable option” for them when it comes to livelihood and especially once they play internationally.
Guanio said PBA 3×3 will have three conferences this year with the second conference set in November and the third in January. There will be six legs and one grand finals for each conference.
Guanio said they have also opened the possibility of inviting foreign teams to join the PBA 3×3, and admitted that they’ve had initial talks with representatives from Singapore and Vietnam.
“We’re also discussing adding a women’s tournament and that might happen in the third conference. It looks like we will be able to get eight teams. It will be upon the approval of the PBA board. Hopefully, it will push through,” said Guanio.