THE PBA has officially introduced new balls on Sunday during the opening of the Commissioner’s Cup at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Commissioner Willie Marcial said the Molten BG5000, the same model that will be used in the Fiba World Cup, has not been released to the market and the PBA is the first league to use the balls.
According to its official website, the Molten BG5000 is softer and less slippery even when in contact with sweat.
Marcial said all teams were given the new balls prior to the Commissioner’s Cup to allow the players to adjust.
So far, the reaction of the players who played in the opening game are mixed, with Ray Parks admitting that he is still adjusting to the new ball.
The statistics definitely showed as Parks, who scored 20 points in his PBA debut, shot 6 of 19 from the field including a 1 of 6 clip from threes in Blackwater's 93-91 overtime win over Meralco.
“Basketballs are new. They are so hard to catch and so hard to shoot,” said Parks. “We are getting used to it. We did a great job today. Just have to get used to the basketball and go back to the drawing board.”
Simon Enciso, meanwhile, shot well in his first game with the new balls as he scored 19 points and converted five of his nine three-point shots in Alaska's 111-98 win over Columbian.
Enciso said he likes the new balls after getting the luxury of time to adjust to it.
“When they gave us the new ball to use, we were in the gym twice as much just to trying to get used to it. Because we were so used to the other ball that it really makes a difference,” said Enciso.
“I think the time that I put in in the gym together with my teammates as well really helped me out. Everybody was like, okay we will get this down, we are going to have a feel for the ball,” he added.
Enciso’s verdict of the new ball? “I like it better because it has deeper grooves. You can really feel the ball every time it leaves your hands.”