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Marcial: PBA on Tour a success

League commissioner Willie Marcial believes the PBA On Tour, which concluded its single-round robin games on Sunday, was able to accomplish its objectives while providing entertainment to the basketball fans during the long offseason.

He cited that the exhibition series was a good testing ground for the PBA to hold some out-of-town games since the practice was stopped beginning in 2020 due to the Covid-19.

Willie Marcial PBA PHOTO

The pro league's out-of-town games during the PBA on Tour include Tiaong, Quezon, Baliwag, Bulacan, Batangas City and Dumaguete City.

“We tried holding some games out-of-town and by next season, we will be bringing it back again by playing out-of-town,” Marcial told reporters in Filipino on Sunday at the close of the On Tour that saw Barangay Ginebra squeak past NLEX, 91-85 at the Ynares Arena in Pasig.

The soft-spoken PBA commissioner also took note of the fact that coaches from the 12-member clubs were able to give their seldom-used players an opportunity to not just play, but some even showed what they were capable of.

Even potential rookies got a chance to strut their stuff, thus, giving them an avenue to see if they are indeed ready to throw their hat in the Annual PBA Rookie Draft slated this September.

“Some players who were seldom used by their teams, they got the chance to really show what they could do on the court and shine,” he said.

“While some rookies who wanted to join the draft, at least some coaches saw them already how they play.”

Marcial said while he considers the PBA On Tour a “success,” making it an annual spectacle will all depend on the future calendar of the pro league.

For one, the idea of holding the PBA On Tour was hatched due to a prolonged break to give way for Gilas Pilipinas to prepare as the Philippines serves as one of the hosts for the 2023 FIBA World Cup set to start on Aug. 25.

After the world basketball showpiece, Gilas will also join the Asian Games in Hangzhou, China.

PBA teams have lent their players as sign of full support to Gilas, which is eyeing a strong showing in the FIBA World Cup and the Asian Games.

Credit belongs to : www.manilatimes.net

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