Build-up begins for 2023 SM NBTC cagefest

Luisa Morales - Philstar.com
Build-up begins for 2023 SM NBTC cagefest

MANILA, Philippines – The lead-up to the 2023 SM National Basketball Training Center (NBTC) National Championship is in full swing as qualifiers unfurled for the tournament’s 13th season, which was rescheduled from last month.

A dozen spots for provincial teams and four more slots for international squads are up for grabs for the tiff set April next year.

Two teams from Canada and the United States have already made it through to the championships through the Global Games held in July where Winnipeg and Team United secured their spots.

Up in September will be the Global Games in Italy while Australia, New Zealand and the United Arab Emirates will unfurl their qualifiers a month after.

Though the NBTC's 13th season will now be open to club teams rather than just school-based teams, eligibility remains the same for players as they need to meet the age (not born before January 1, 2004), and their lineage (must have Filipino heritage) to compete in the games.

Meanwhile, for the local teams, November will be the time for reckoning as the Local Qualifying Tournaments are set to happen in various clusters across the country where a total of 144 teams are expected to see action.

LQTs are set to happen in Albay, Baguio, Cavite, Cebu, La Union, Kidapawan, Northern Mindanao, Quezon, Rizal, and the Central Luzon cluster of Bataan, Bulacan, Olongapo, Pampanga and Tarlac.

“We’re so happy and so excited that, finally, we’re here again and we’re back to set up a stage for young Filipinos to shine,” said NBTC Program Director Eric Altamirano.

Apart from those qualifying through the Global Games and LQT, the NBTC National Championship will also feature the NCAA and UAAP Juniors champions and four more squads from the National Capital Region.

Among those who previously competed in the NBTC are the likes of Jalen Green, Kai Sotto, Troy Rosario and Jeron Teng.


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