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PBA rolls out ‘Esports Bakbakan’

The Philippine Basketball Association formally ventures into the world of Esports as it collaborated with Dark League Studios in launching the Esports Bakbakan set for a grand kickoff in March of this year.

PBA commissioner Willie Marcial said their partnership with Dark League is a “win-win situation” since they can combine both sports entertainment and the growing influence of modern technology.

Joining Marcial in the recent press launch were Dark League Studios chief executive officer AC Valdenor, PBA marketing director Jo Francisco, Dark League Studios chief revenue officer Cherry Valdenor, program director Mark Chua and Dark League Studios head of operations Carlo Giron.

Also gracing the press briefing were PBA governor Alfrancis Chua of Barangay Ginebra and PBA board vice chairman Bobby Rosales.

“With the history of the PBA as sports entertainment combined with the growing influence of modern technology, I think this is a win-win situation for both parties, the PBA and Dark League,” Marcial said.

“This early, we already want to thank Dark League for collaborating with the PBA.”

Valdenor said partnering with the PBA is their effort to create aspirations for the next generation.

“It’s an eye-opener for all the Filipinos. For the longest time, there’s really been a separation between the community of traditional sports and Esports,” Valdenor said.

“We do it not just to bridge the gap, but to create aspirations for the next generation.”

Around 4,000 aspirants applied for possible slots within the teams involved, although the numbers have since been trimmed to a pool of 70 who are all going through the draft.

The 12 teams will play in a single round robin format, with the top four advancing in best-of-five playoffs, which could either be held at the Mall of Asia Arena or the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Games will be played every Monday for five weeks and are going to be livestreamed in the league’s official accounts.

A prize money of P1 million is at stake, with the champion team receiving P750,000.

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