Madness in MOA as NBTC gears up for 11th season

Paul Lintag on Mar 15, 2018 12:48 PM
Madness in MOA as NBTC gears up for 11th season
As the National Basketball Training Center gears up for an 11th season, a new format has been installed for its national championships slated for March 18-23.

Madness is about to take place at the Mall of Asia Arena.

As the National Basketball Training Center gears up for an 11th season, a new format has been installed for its national championships slated for March 18-23.

Patterned after the US NCAA Tournament, this year's NBTC will host 32 teams, comprised of the very best high schools teams in the country as well as select teams from overseas, particularly AusPinoy (Australia), Durham Crossover (Canada), Camp David (New Zealand), and FilAm Sports (United States).

The Philippines is also well represented as the seeded teams are led by UAAP Juniors champion Ateneo de Manila, NCAA Juniors champion La Salle Greenhills, University of Visayas, winners of CESAFI, and MBBL champion Chiang Kai Shek.

"We started from three cities, ngayon nasa 80 na kami. From what I gathered, by next year nasa 100 na kami," SM-NBTC founder Eric Altamirano said.

With NBTC expanding, the the tournament pattern, inspired by that of the US NCAA makes sense.

This is where the very best high school teams settle the score to crown one true national champion.

"Every year that we have been organizing the tournament, we have refined it to what it is now, a premier showcase for high school basketball," Coach E said.

"It has also become a springboard for Fil-foreign teams to showcase their players who might want to study in the Philippines or play for various national teams," Altamirano added.

Madness will start on March 18 with the seeding round to be followed by the Round of 32 for Division 1 the following day.

On March 20, the Round of 16 for both Division 1 and Division 2 will start while March 21 will be for the Elite 8 and the NBTC 3x3 joust.

March 22 is the Final 4 and March 23 will be the culmination of it all, with the Finals and the highly-anticipated NBTC All-Star Game.

As it stands, the Blue Eaglets are seeded no. 1 while La Salle Greenhills is no. 2 followed by Chiang Kai Shek and UV. Nazareth School of National University complete the top-5 seeds in Division 1.

Catch the livestream of the 2018 NBTC All-Stars Division 2 at 9 am, the All-Star Division 1 at 12 noon, the Division 2  Finals at  2 pm and the Divsion 1 Finals at 4 pm on March 23, Friday. The games will air on a delayed basis on March 27, Tuesday and March 28, Wednesday at 2 pm and 4 pm on S+A and S+A HD.


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