April 9, 2021.
That’s the date the PBA is looking at for the start of its 46th season after the board of governors convened on Thursday, where it tackled various topics that concern the league moving forward.
Commissioner Willie Marcial, though, said that it will depend on the COVID-19 situation in the country at that time. Still, he is optimistic given the reports regarding vaccines recently.
“Nag-request ako sa governors hanggang February para makita natin kung may vaccine na; makita natin ‘yung economy; para malaman natin kung anong klaseng bubble. Pinag-aaralan pa namin,” he said.
“Malaking bagay sa atin ‘yung vaccine. Baka hindi lang matuloy ‘yung PBA na hindi na bubble, baka may makapanood pa sa’tin. Sana magtuloy-tuloy,” the third-year league chief added.
The league hopes that it can return to its usual three-conference format, unlike this season in the bubble where only the Philippine Cup is taking place due to the circumstances brought upon by the pandemic.
Season 45 opened back on March 8, but the league suspended it just days later as the virus began to wreak havoc in the country. It took seven months for the league to resume the season at the former US military base.
According to Marcial, the 46th season will run from April to January 2022 if three conferences will be played. “Kung April, sukat naman tayo three conferences pero matatapos ng January,” he said.
Meanwhile, the PBA is also looking to hold the PBA 3×3 inaugurals next year.
“Ang 3×3, [susubukan] namin maka-3×3 by Feb or March, o kung kaya namin ng January. Pero palagay ko, Feb o March na magsimula,” said Marcial, noting that a commissioner for the standalone league will also be searched.