THE Cebuano hoop fans will witness the defending champion San Miguel Alab Pilipinas play for the third time in Cebu in a game that has a bigger magnitude.
Alab Pilipinas is set to play the first round of the Asean Basketball League (ABL) playoff at the Hoops Dome in Lapu-Lapu City at 8 p.m. on March 29. That match follows two jam-packed games against Zhuahai Wolf Warriors on Jan. 6 and Saigon Heat on Feb. 3.
“We are excited to bring Alab Pilipinas’ first every playoff home game to Cebu as Alab defends its championship. It’s also Alab’s way of thanking the Cebu fans for the tremendous support that they had received (in their two games here),” said Alab Pilipinas home games organizer and Batang Gilas team manager Andrew Teh.
One thing left for Alab Pilipinas to settle is the ranking for playoffs. Alab leads in the team standings with an 8-5 (win-loss) card but the second-ranked Formosa Dreamers are closely on their heels with a 17-6 card.
The team has three games left in the elimination round against tough opponents such as Macau Black Bears (12-11), Dreamers and Heat (12-12).
Alab Pilipinas fell to the Black Bears and Dreamers in their previous clash, making the tail-end of the eliminations more challenging for the Jimmy Alapag-coached team.
The Dreamers have a fighting chance in stealing the top-seed from Alab Pilipinas with light schedules in their last two games against cellar-dweller teams in Warriors (2-21) and Westsports Malaysian (7-15).
In the playoffs, the top-seeded team will play the No. 8, while the No. 2 plays the No. 7, the No. 3 battles the No. 6 and the No. 4 clashes with the No. 5.
Alab Pilipinas drew huge support from the Cebuano fans in the two blowouts wins here. First was a clinical 105-95 win over Zhuhai Wolf followed with a 111-87 romp over Saigon.
The tickets for the playoff game are now for sale. Entry fee is at P1,200 for the VIP seats, P600 for the lower box and P350 for the upper box. (RSC)