BOCAUE, Bulacan — As the 44th Season of the PBA has officially begun, the 12 participating teams not only made sure to get their rosters ready but also their respective muses.
Composed of actresses, beauty queens, and athletes, the muses were the highlight of the opening ceremonies on Sunday at the Philippine Arena.
She may have received a lot of criticism when Magnolia chose her to be the muse, but Sharon Cuneta got the most selfies from players and PBA governors during the ceremony.
“Nahiya nga ako eh [nagpapicture sila sa akin]. Siguro kung hindi sila mahilig sa KPop, mama nila ako, ate, tita ganoon,” she said.
The Mega Star, who last became a muse for Purefoods in the 90s, was glad to be back in the PBA representing the franchise.
“Of course I’m honored. I’m very happy. I’m proud of Magnolia and to be part of the family. Lahat naman ng teams masarap maging part ng ganitong liga,” she said.
Cuneta is family to some of the PBA stars, including Magnolia's Marc Pingris, who is the husband of Sharon's cousin, Danica Sotto.
Third time’s the charm.
TNT KaTropa muse Sam Pinto felt good to be back as a PBA muse.
“Masaya ako na I’m here again. I’m back [as PBA muse],” said Pinto, who was a muse for Global Port in 2012 and San Miguel in 2010.
Pinto vowed all-out support not only for her boyfriend, TNT KaTropa cager Anthony Semerad, but for the entire team.
“It feels awesome kasi I’m supporting this team,” she said.
Alyssa came not only as a muse for NLEX but also as a representative for her boyfriend, Road Warriors star Kiefer Ravena, who is still suspended after failing a doping test.
“Representative daw muna ako [ni Kiefer],” she said smiling.
“Syempre we’re very sad naman na hindi pa makakalaro, pero konting tiis na lang talaga and he’ll be back for sure, stronger than ever. We’re just looking forward na this is a blessing in disguise also sa career niya sa PBA,” she added.
Valdez, who’s also a superstar in her own right, still feels nervous about being a PBA muse despite it being her second time as one (the first time was in 2015 for TNT KaTropa).
“Oo naman, I think yung kaba is always going to be there kasi siguro it’s not my turf naman talaga,” said the Creamline team captain.
“And I think one thing na nakakakaba lalo is yung binibigyan ka ng trust din ng teams na nandito sa PBA, and I think it’s a good sign na kinakakabahan ka pa rin knowing kung saan ka naman dapat, which is sa volleyball court,” she added.
No hate, just love.
Phoenix muse Yam Concepcion came in character, saying that she has a lot of boys to choose from now that her Halik partners Ace, played by Sam Milby, and Lino, played by Jericho Rosales, were not around.
“It feels great kasi andaming mga boys. Hindi, joke lang,” she said laughing. “Ang dami kong pagpipilian as Jade, also kasi sa ngayon wala na si Ace, wala na si Lino.”
“Ngayon I have the whole team to support me and I’m here also to support them,” she added.
Turning serious, Concepcion, 28, shared that it wasn’t her first time as a muse for a basketball team.
“Noong bata ako nag-muse na rin ako sa mga village teams lang. I was five years old. And then now, I’m here talagang bonggang bongga with Phoenix Fuel Masters. Talagang I’m very happy and lucky to be their muse,” she said.
“Ito kasi legit eh, yun [dati] kasi laru-laro lang. Ito, it’s the real thing,” she added.
Tonight fulfilled two of Aya Fernandez’s dreams--the first was to be able to watch a basketball game live, and the second to be Northport's team representative.
“Sobrang excited kasi ever since, growing up, I’ve been also playing basketball and I’ve been a fan of PBA and basketball as well,” she said.
“So this time I’m not part of the audience, watching, but this time I’ll be representing one of the teams so sobrang exciting,” she added.
Former athlete turned beauty queen Eva Patalinjug proudly represented Meralco in the PBA opening ceremonies.
The 2018 Binibining Pilipinas Grand International, who used to be a taekwondo player in high school, felt no pressure at all and enjoyed every moment.
“I’m very excited [to be their muse]. I’m very excited to witness the PBA opening in the flesh,” she said.
Kelley Day just wanted to have fun when she paraded as the muse for Columbian Dyip.
The Kapuso actress shared that, although it was her first time to be a PBA muse, she will just enjoy the moment.
“No pressure at all, I’m very excited. I just wanna enjoy,” she said.
Although she didn’t expect to be the Rain or Shine muse, beauty queen Annie Uson will make the most of the opportunity that was given to her.
“Syempre super gulat kasi I was chosen thru Mutya ng Pilipinas and we were 50, and ako ang napili di ba? Kaya super shocking lang. [Pero] walang kaba, enjoy lang, fun lang,” she said.
Athletes representing athletes.
Volleyball star Myla Pablo and swimmer Jasmine Alkhaldi represented Blackwater.
“I’m really thankful na binigyan ako ng opportunity ng Blackwater Elite,” said Pablo, who’s now with Motolite.
“I’m very honored and humbled to be given this opportunity and I guess it’s very rare for athletes to become muses so I’m very excited and very happy to be here,” added Alkhaldi.
Beauty queens were well represented during the PBA opening ceremonies but Ginebra made sure it got the crown when it tapped Miss Universe 2015 Pia Wurtzbach to represent the team.
According to Queen P's manager, it was her first time to be a PBA muse and we all hope it won't be the last.
It was her second time to be a PBA muse and Kylie Verzosa was as stunning as ever in her little white dress.
The Miss International 2016, who was the muse for Magnolia two years ago, represented San Miguel this time around.
Kapuso actress Klea Pineda represented Alaska.
Looking extremely elegant in a red dress, Pineda had a lot of fun dancing along with the rap music during the PBA opening ceremonies.