MANILA – The Philippine Basketball Association’s (PBA) board of governors has agreed on some key developments that will involve Gilas Pilipinas Men for its upcoming season.
Following the board meeting on Monday, the most significant move made was for Gilas Men to play as a guest team in the Philippine Cup scheduled to start on April 9.
While they will play as a guest team due to the current core’s amateur status, PBA commissioner Willie Marcial said Gilas Men are eligible to win the championship in the season-opening conference.
The collegiate players in the national team will first need to secure special guest licenses from the Games and Amusements Board to be cleared for PBA action.
On the other hand, this would also mean Isaac Go, Rey Suerte, the Nieto twins, and even Allyn Bulanadi, if he gets cleared to play after his shoulder surgery, will finally see some PBA action after deferring from last season following their selection in the Gilas round of the 2019 draft due to Gilas Men commitments.
If successful, the Nationals could become the first Philippine national team to capture the top tier league title since the fabled Northern Consolidated Cement-backed national squad during the mid-’80s.
On the other hand, the PBA board also agreed that the special Gilas round for the PBA Draft on March 14 will only be good for three to five picks.
This means by default, only Terrafirma, NorthPort, and Blackwater Bossing would benefit from the Gilas round as they own the first three picks of the regular draft.
It is yet to be known, though, if previous trades will factor in even in the Gilas round as the Bossing gave up their third overall pick to the NLEX Road Warriors in the blockbuster Poy Erram trade to TNT Tropang Giga.
The NLEX and maybe Rain Or Shine would benefit from the Gilas draft if the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas opts to go beyond three in the said round.The board also agreed that the Gilas draftees may get to play for the teams that chose them if they are free to play. (PNA)