NEWCOMERS Kia Motors and Blackwater Elite will start their campaign while Talk ‘N Text will face Ginebra San Miguel today in the opening of the 40th season of the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) at the newly built Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan.
It was estimated that more than 40,000 tickets have been sold already to fans that want to watch the debut of boxing icon Manny Pacquiao as Kia playing coach. Veteran cager Glenn Capacio is the squad’s assistant coach.
Expected to lead Kia’s charge are Hans Thiele, LA Revilla, R-Kenneth Ighalo, Richard Alonzo, Rudy Lingganay, Eder Saldua, Joshua Webb, Paul Sanga, Alvin Padilla, Richard Alvarez, Reil Cervantes, Angelus Raymundo and Michael Burtscher.
Coach Leo Isaac’s Blackwater will be led by Bryan Faundo, Chris Timberlake, Juan Miguel Tiongson, Alex Nuyles, John Paul Erram, Rogemar Menor, Gilbert Bulawan, JR Cawaling, Paul Artadi, Jason Ballesteros, Riego Gamalinda, Eddie Laure, Raymond Austria and Sunday Salvacion.
The Kia vs. Blackwater match begins at 3 p.m. while the Tropang Texters vs. Barangay Ginebra bout unfolds at 5:15 p.m.
An elaborate opening ceremonies set at 1:30 p.m. will usher in the league’s 40th season, which will be highlighted by the presentation of the teams of their respective muses.
After the opener, regular games will be played at the Araneta Coliseum with double-header games slated every Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. Road Games is also scheduled on Saturday, October 25 in Lucena City, November 8 in Tubod, Lanao del Norte, November 15 in Davao City, November 22 in Cagayan de Oro City, November 23 and 29 in Biñan, Laguna and December 6 in Dipolog City.
All 12 teams will be playing at least 33 games in the 10-month calendar of the 2014-2015 season with a minimum of 11 games in each of the three conferences. A single-round-robin elimination phase is in the offing for the Philippine Cup, the Commissioner’s Cup and the Governors Cup.