CIGNAL-Ateneo and Metropac Movers-San Beda emerge as the top teams as the collegiate champions found themselves slotted in opposing groups ahead of the 2019 PBA D-League season.
The league released the groupings for the 20-team field on Saturday.
Joining Cignal-Ateneo in Group A are UAAP rivals UST, NCAA contenders Go for Gold-CSB, Petron-Letran, and Batangas-EAC, NAASCU titlist St. Clare-Virtual Reality, FamilyMart-Enderun, AMA Online Education and club teams Che'Lu Bar and Grill and McDavid.
Meanwhile, three-peat NCAA champs Metropac Movers-San Beda banners Group B, which also has NCAA foes Valencia City Bukidnon-San Sebastian, Perpetual, UAAP studs Cha Dao Milk Tea-FEU and SMDC-NU, UCBL kings Diliman College, CEU, The Masterpiece-Trinity, and clubs Marinerong Pilipino and Wangs Basketball.
Teams will play in a round-robin format, playing nine games against teams in their respective groups, with the top four teams earning a trip to the crossover quarterfinals. The top two teams in each group will enjoy a twice-to-beat advantage.
Victors of the said meetings will progress to the best-of-three semifinals, with the last two teams standing facing off in the best-of-five championship series.
The 2019 PBA D-League season tips off on Feb. 14 at Ynares Sports Arena in Pasig.