PBA PH Cup champions to face Abando, Anyang KGC in EASL opener

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(CNN Philippines, August 3) — The 2022 PBA Philippine Cup champions will kick off their East Asia Super League (EASL) campaign with an away match on Oct. 12 against Korean Basketball League team Anyang KGC, which recently added Rhenz Abando to its lineup.

Abando, the reigning NCAA Rookie Most Valuable Player and Gilas Pilipinas member, signed with Anyang last week as he bid Colegio de San Juan de Letran goodbye after just one season.

The Philippine Cup runner-up will also see action on opening day in Manila, hosting the Bay Area Dragons which features former NBA player Andrew Nicholson.

Only four squads remain in the PBA All-Filipino conference, as the top seed San Miguel Beermen battle the Meralco Bolts, while defending champions TNT Tropang Giga face Magnolia in a best-of-seven semifinals which begin today at the Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City.

The two PBA ballclubs that advance to the best-of-seven title series will represent the Philippines in the EASL, where eight teams representing major leagues around Asia are divided into two groups.

In Group A, the PBA champion will be up against Japan’s Ryukyu Golden Kings on Nov. 2 and Taiwan’s Taipei Fubon Braves on Dec. 28 at home.

In the second phase of the double round robin, the PBA champion will clash with Taipei again on Jan. 11, Anyang on Jan. 25, and Ryukyu on Feb. 1 next year.

On the other hand, the PBA runner-up will square off with the Dragons on Oct. 26, Japan’s Utsunomiya Brex on Dec. 7 and Dec. 21, and Korea’s Seoul SK Knights on Jan. 11 and 18 in Group B.

The top two teams in each group will advance to the crossover semis on March 3, with the two surviving squads vying for the grand prize of $1 million (about ₱55 million) in the finals on March 5.