PBA keeping import handicapping system for next season to aid expansion teams 
KIA's PJ Ramos was among the tall imports who stood out last season. Jerome Ascano

TOKYO – The PBA will again feature an import handicapping when it ushers its 41st season in October.

Maybe not for long, though.

League officials said the blueprint is going to be revisited on a yearly basis especially once the two expansion franchises in Blackwater and Mahindra finally settle down with the rest of the 10 member teams.

“Obviously, it cannot continue forever because the goal is to have a balance lineup for all the teams, a balance competition to make the games exciting,” said league president and CEO Chito Salud following the PBA board’s annual planning session Tuesday.

“But we’re not yet there obviously, because of the two expansion teams, but it will not go on forever.”

They Said It!

Balanced lineup on all teams? Maybe the PBA needs another eye or two to see if all teams are really balanced talentwise. It's the corporate teams that gets away with most precious talents and that's no balance at all. #justsaying" - Bryan Disimulacion 

The handicapping system among imports was again adopted last season primarily to help the Elite and Sorento be competitive against the rest of the field.

Under last year’s set-up, the four teams which finished at the bottom four of the standings during the Philippine Cup were allowed to tap imports of unlimited height, while the four teams with the worst standings after the all-Filipino (final standing) and Commissioners Cup (eliminations) combined also got the go signal to have imports with unlimited height during the season-ending conference.  

The same system is going to be implemented this season, although the board has yet to agree on the height ceiling among imports.

Chairman Robert Non however, said time has to come that expansion teams have to learn to stand up on its own and not just rely on special concessions by the league such as the handicapping system.

“Somehow nasa kanila na rin yun on how to improve their team,” said the San Miguel Corp. executive.


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