MANILA, Philippines—Half of the teams for the returning Smart NBTC National Finals have been determined.
With 24 slots being open to high school and basketball clubs, 12 provincial teams have already booked their tickets to the biggest showcase for young Philippine basketball talents.
Former Division 1 champion Sacred Heart School-Ateneo de Cebu and Pampanga Delta are some of the notable names for the upcoming tournament.
Along with the two history-rich clubs are Team Tarlac (representing Central Luzon), University of Luzon (Baguio), Philippine Christian University Dasmariñas (Cavite), Holy Trinity College General Santos (Kidapawan) and Saint Benilde International School Calamba (Laguna).
Squads Level Up Max Ballers Davao (Northern Mindanao) Batang Tiaong (Quezon), Don Bosco Dumaguete (Visayas) and Doc Boleros (Caloocan/Quezon City) are also confirmed to make a bid for the 13th season championship.
Pampanga Delta, Team Tarlac, Level Up Max Ballers Davao, Batang Tiaong, and Doc Boleros all are considered ball clubs.
Just a few weeks ago, the NBTC confirmed that the National Finals will not be confined to school teams only, giving way for more young talents to showcase their talents.
Prior to the tournament’s cancellation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Nazareth School of National University held the crown for simultaneous years (2018 and 2019).
Twenty-four teams will be competing in classification contests where winners will be pooled into Division 1.
Losers, on the other hand, will be moved to Division 2. Both divisions will then get three-team groups of four which will battle each other in round-robin eliminations.
The top teams from both pools will march on to the knockout semifinals and then finals, where the Division 1 and Division 2 top squads will be determined.
The NBTC’s 13th iteration of the Nartional Finals will take place from March 15 to 19 at Mall of Asia Arena.
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