KOBE Paras and Ricci Rivero gear up for the upcoming season when University of the Philippines makes its debut against defending NCAA champion San Beda in the start of the 2019 Filoil Flying V Preseason Cup Sunday.
The two have their work cut out for them after UP’s fine performance last season, as they'll be front and center for the Fighting Maroons together with UAAP Season 81 MVP Bright Akhuetie and star guard Juan Gomez de Liano, when they hit the court at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan at 4 p.m.
But it's won’t be easy for the boys of UP coach Bo Perasol, especially against a young San Beda team coached by Boyet Fernandez.
Fil-Canadian guard James Canlas has been solid for the Red Lions in the offseason, while guys like Donald Tankoua, Clint Doliguez and Calvin Oftana are also expected to contribute.
University of Santo Tomas tackles a revamped La Salle at 2 p.m.
Growling Tigers coach Aldin Ayo will unveil his relentless crew bannered by Mark Nonoy, Beninese forward Soulemane Chabi Yo and veteran guards Renzo Subido and Marvin Lee.
It will also be the public's first chance to see the new-look Green Archers under new bench tactician Jermaine Byrd as shooter Aljun Melecio and center Justine Baltazar will be counted on to get the opening day victory.
All four teams are slotted in Group A, together with San Sebastian, Mapua, Arellano and CEU.
NCAA runner-up Lyceum, alongside UAAP Final Four contenders FEU and Adamson banner Group B, where they are slotted with Letran, St. Benilde, JRU, EAC and NU.
Aside from the seniors and juniors tournaments, the summer circuit will also have 11-and-under division for the first time in its 13-year history.