PH has new developmental hoops league in PSBL

The stage is set for the PSBL. Ivan Saldajeno
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—Right on the Republic of the Philippines' "birthday", a new basketball league was born.

Aptly named after the "Pearl of the Orient", the newly founded Perlas ng Silangan Basketball League formally introduced itself to the general public with a grand launch on Wednesday at the Manila Grand Opera Hotel.

"Today, we stand sa bagong era ng basketball, where passion, skills, and camaraderie converge to ignite the spirit of competition," Christian Ensomo, the league's CEO, said in his opening remarks.

PBA legend Rodney Santos was revealed during the press launch as the league's inaugural commissioner.

"I'm just happy to be part of the Perlas ng Silangan Basketball League," Santos said.

He then said that the first season of the PSBL would have seven age-group categories, the under-11, under-13, under-15, under-17, under-19, under-21, and open divisions.

The former San Sebastian King Stag also said the league intends to reach various communities like the local government units, barangays, schools, and the Filipino community overseas.

"I believe lalaki talaga itong liga na ito," Santos further said.

Teams confirmed to be joining are LGU-based South Caloocan, Taytay, Marilao, Valenzuela, Bocaue, Meycauayan, and clubs Yengskivel and Don Facundo.

Categorizing itself as a "developmental league", Ensomo said that the PSBL will only be open for amateur players who want to showcase their talents in hopes of getting noticed by mainstream leagues.

The fitness expert also bared that the PSBL would eventually put up its own volleyball and esports leagues, but he too said that fans should look forward to the Perlas ng Silangan Filipino Martial Arts League.

"Filipino martial arts is something that hindi masyadong nabibigyan ng tulong at pansin," Ensomo continued

Nato Agbayani, the PSBL COO, added that arnis is among the events to watch out for in the martial arts league.

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