Philippines, Sports, television

PBA Expected to Remain on TV5 Due to Short Offseason

Barangay Ginebra's victory in the 2016 PBA Governors' Cup would have marked the end of a five-year relationship between the league and TV5, but a short offseason changes things. (Photo credit: The Philippine Star)

Barangay Ginebra’s victory in the 2016 PBA Governors’ Cup would have marked the end of a five-year relationship between the league and TV5, but a short offseason could change all that. (Photo credit: The Philippine Star)

The shorter-than-expected offseason could keep the PBA within TV5’s hands.

The 2015-16 season came to an end Wednesday night, when Barangay Ginebra San Miguel broke an eight-year title drought by winning the season-ending Governors’ Cup title over the Meralco Bolts. Game 6 of the Governors’ Cup Finals would have marked the end of a five-year contract that TV5 signed with the PBA back in 2011.

Instead, another year of coverage looms in the seemingly fruitful relationship between the PBA and the Manny V. Pangilinan-owned network.

Two weeks from now, the 2016 PBA Rookie Draft will take place at the Robinsons Place Manila. The draft will be conducted in two batches: a regular draft for early entry applicants, and a special draft for amateur players who were invited to the Gilas pool.

Then on November 20, the season-opening Philippine Cup will get underway. Thus, it will be a very short offseason for the PBA, owing to a long break from late May to mid-July due to the FIBA Olympic Qualifiers that Gilas participated.

With a short turnaround from last season, it is expected that TV5 will remain the main home of the PBA. And there are three reasons why the league could still air on the MVP-owned network, which are:

  1. The PBA Rush channel, which was only established prior to last season’s Governors’ Cup.
  2. The lack of other network options due to a variety of circumstances.
  3. The promotion of Chot Reyes to the role of head honcho within TV5.

With all these situations coming into play, it is clear that the PBA has no other choice. Despite the past issues that the league faced during its initial five-year tenure with TV5, the latter’s progressive steps to improve its coverage indicate that the relationship is an otherwise successful one, contrary to the critics’ perceptions.

One month from now, a new season of the PBA begins. Unfortunately for the league, there is not much time to plan, so it’s safe to say that next year, it will be TV5 who will once again bring the PBA to every television set in the country, for now.

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Philippines, Sports, television

Underrated College Basketball Leagues Try to Etch Footprints on Philippine TV

The 2016 NAASCU basketball tournament is just one of three under-the-radar collegiate basketball competitions that received ample airtime on television this year. (Photo credit: Philippine Daily Inquirer)

The 2016 NAASCU basketball tournament is just one of three under-the-radar collegiate basketball competitions that received ample airtime on television this year. (Photo credit: Philippine Daily Inquirer)

The UAAP and the NCAA are not the only collegiate basketball tournaments that are making hoop fans jump for joy.

This year, three other college basketball tournaments are getting their much-needed due by way of television exposure. They are:

  • NAASCU (National Athletic Association of Schools, Colleges and Universities)
  • CESAFI (Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation, Inc.)
  • UCBL (Universities and Colleges Basketball League)

The NAASCU is the third most popular collegiate sports league in the country behind the UAAP and the NCAA. The league is also the biggest membership-wise among the three, with a total of 14 member schools.

This year, the NAASCU men’s basketball tournament was televised via Solar Sports and Basketball TV, with the finals of the men’s, women’s and juniors tournaments also airing on the said networks. It marked the first time that the whole NAASCU tournament was aired on television; previous coverors in IBC-13 and Net 25 aired a select amount of games, with the latter focusing in particular on the Iglesia ni Cristo-owned New Era University teams.

The CESAFI, on the other hand, is the top collegiate sports league in the Visayas. Although the CESAFI is not as well-recognized as its Metro Manila counterparts, it nevertheless carved its own niche in the Filipino hoops scene by producing stars such as current Ginebra big man Greg Slaughter and San Miguel center June Mar Fajardo.

The 12-member CESAFI currently airs its basketball tournament on AksyonTV, and is produced by VIVA Sports. Previously, the games were aired on IBC-13.

And speaking of IBC-13, a new league began to sprout on the said channel. That league, the UCBL, is exclusively a basketball-only league unlike its fellow contemporaries, with seven schools from all over Luzon participating.

The UCBL games are produced by the Asian Television Content Corporation, the same outfit that produced the NAASCU and the PBA D-League on IBC-13. The deal to air the games was set a month ago, even as the network continues its privatization process.

Indeed, college basketball in the Philippines is on the upswing. Although the UAAP and the NCAA continue to be the darlings of the sport, the less heralded trio in the NAASCU, CESAFI and UCBL now try to find their own niche, and this should benefit the game of basketball as a whole in the country.

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entertainment, Philippines, Sports, television

PBA Quarterfinals Scheduling Quirks

Today will mark the start of the PBA Philippine Cup playoff rounds. As is the case the past two seasons, the playoff games will be played on a daily basis up until the Semifinals. However, there are some scheduling quirks which may baffle some viewers.

Tuesday’s doubleheader will have Petron vs. Barako Bull, and Talk N’ Text vs. San Mig Super Coffee. However, the former will not be shown live on TV as AksyonTV is slated to air weekly United Football League doubleheaders. Instead it will shown on a delayed basis over at TV5 after ‘Reaksyon’. The latter will also not be seen on AksyonTV, but will have a live broadcast on TV5.

For Wednesday’s doubleheader featuring Rain or Shine vs. Globalport, and Barangay Ginebra vs. Alaska, the first game will be a live broadcast on AksyonTV and a delayed broadcast on TV5, while the second game will be aired live on both networks. However, there will be no games on Thursday as TV5 is scheduled to air the pilot episode of the weekly drama series ‘Obsession’.

Friday’s doubleheader featuring the four teams that played on Tuesday will follow the same broadcast pattern as Wednesday’s doubleheader. But should both Wednesday doubleheader brackets extend to a do-or-die match, the first game will be shown live on both AksyonTV and TV5, while the second game will be seen only on AksyonTV. Now here’s the dilemma: TV5 does not air the second game on Saturdays, but because ‘What’s Up Doods?’ is presumably cancelled, they may move both ‘SPINNation’ and ‘Pilipinas News Weekend’ to that timeslot to allow the second PBA quarterfinals game to air.

Finally, the Sunday games will have Game 3 of either one or two series that played on Friday, and will be seen on TV5 and AksyonTV. In short, Sports5 is following virtually the same broadcast script that have been followed since the start of the eliminations.

With that, good luck to all the teams in the playoffs, and good luck to all the viewers trying to watch a PBA game on TV.

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entertainment, Philippines, television

‘What’s Up Doods’ Preempted for Bieber Documentary

Pop musician Justin Bieber is in Tacloban recently to give cheers to the victims of Typhoon Haiyan. TV5 will air the documentary tonight.

Tonight’s lineup of TV5’s ‘Weekend Do It Better’ will not see Edu Manzano interview various guests on his talk show ‘What’s Up Doods?’. Instead the Kapatid network will air a special documentary as part of its continuing relief efforts for the victims of Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda).

Titled ‘Give Love, Give Back Philippines‘, the documentary centers on a surprise visit by pop singer Justin Bieber to Tacloban in order to provide donations and relief goods to the typhoon victims. The one-hour documentary will feature Bieber in a different light, as he tries to remain humble amid his fame and give a more positive outlook to the victims. Also included is the exclusive full-length interview with Raymond Gutierrez that first aired on ‘Showbiz Police’ last week, along with a mini-concert for the victims.

Bieber’s #GiveBackPhilippines campaign raised over $1M in cash, and has also produced a limited edition t-shirt with the proceeds being given to TV5’s Alagang Kapatid Foundation. The campaign donations were raised during his ongoing tour promoting his latest album ‘Believe’.

‘What’s Up Doods?’ aired a ‘Best of’ episode last week featuring interviews from Georgina Wilson, Jinri Park and Ramon Bautista, and with the program on hiatus for the holidays, it is only logical to have the Bieber documentary air tonight.

In the meantime, here is today’s late afternoon and evening schedule on TV5:

3:30 – PBA: Barangay Ginebra San Miguel vs. Alaska Aces

5:45 – Aksyon Weekend

6:15 – Showbiz Police

6:45 – Pinoy Explorer

7:45 – Tropa Mo Ko Unli

8:45 – Killer Karaoke Pinoy Naman

9:45 – Give Love, Give Back Philippines: A Justin Bieber Special

10:45 – Juan Direction

11:15 – SpinNation

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Philippines, Sports, television

PBA Games Today on AksyonTV

Sports5‘s job of covering the PBA games just got tougher. Having adjusted to a new broadcast setup, the network announced that the special Thursday doubleheader will only be aired live on AksyonTV, with replays on TV5 later tonight and on Friday afternoon.

The first game will feature the Alaska Aces and the Talk N’ Text Tropang Texters at 5:30 p.m., followed by the much-anticipated matchup between the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel and the Globalport Batang Pier at 8:00 p.m. Both games will be played at the Mall of Asia Arena.

The two games were supposed to be played on the normal Friday playdate. But due to the lack of an available venue for tomorrow, the PBA had no choice but to move the doubleheader to Thursday. Unfortunately this is also the day where TV5 teleseryes ‘Positive’ and ‘For Love or Money’ normally air, and with no available options, Sports5 decided to air the games only on AksyonTV. In addition today’s live games will also be streamed through the internet at http://www.interaktv.ph.

In relation to today’s PBA games on AksyonTV, the scheduled United Football League Cup quarterfinal doubleheaders were moved to IBC-13. The two games in Taguig‘s Emperador Stadium will feature Philippine Air Force FC facing against Union Internacional Manila, and Stallion FC versus Pachanga Diliman. This will be the second sports event covered by IBC-13 in cooperation with another broadcast partner since the end of the AKTV era; they aired a replay of the Manny Pacquiao-Brandon Rios fight last Sunday with Solar Sports. The temporary move to Thursday was another highly-criticized move that has affected Sports5’s broadcast relationship with the PBA.

Last season the Manny V. Pangilinan-owned network and the league had an argument over channel assignments after the expiration of Sports5’s blocktime rights with IBC-13. Then two weeks into the new season the network aired only a handful of live games on TV5 because of its loaded primetime lineup, an adjustment made out of necessity.

But in an era of growing cable and internet subscription, Sports5’s moves were needed to push the PBA coverage to a new level. And the PBA allowed this arrangement so that they can be flexible with TV5’s current schedule, even as viewers continue to complain over the new arrangement.

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entertainment, Philippines, Sports, television

New PBA TV Setup for the Season

The PBA will have a new broadcast setup, with most games airing live on TV5 and some on AksyonTV and Fox Sports Asia.

The new PBA season got underway Sunday with a three-city slate. The Manila leg pitted the San Mig Coffee Mixers and Barangay Ginebra San Miguel in the ‘Manila Clasico‘ rivalry, while at the same time sibling rivals Meralco Bolts and Talk N’ Text Tropang Texters faced off in Cebu. And in Davao, the Alaska Aces took on the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters. All of that was preceded by the customary opening ceremonies that kicked off the new season.

This season a majority of the PBA games will be aired on TV5, with some on AksyonTV and cable network Fox Sports Asia. Under the new arrangement, the second or the ‘marquee’ game will be seen live on TV5 during weekdays and Saturdays, with the first game airing live on both AksyonTV and Fox Sports Asia. On Sundays both games of the doubleheader will be seen live on TV5.

This new arrangement was made so that TV5 can still air their weekday news and entertainment programs in the late afternoon/early evening slot. Most importantly, it enables the network to select the matchups that are more compelling and intense for the viewer-rich 8:00 p.m. slot. As such, the San Miguel franchises, Alaska, Talk N’ Text and Rain or Shine will be featured regularly in the evening game.

As for the first game of the weekday doubleheader, it will air live on AksyonTV (and presumably Fox Sports Asia) to satisfy basketball fans’ demands, with the replay airing on TV5 later in the evening. The new setup is considered a test broadcast for the PBA in hopes of bringing a more versatile television coverage in all platforms. Viewers may not agree on this considering the weaker signals on the UHF band and the expenses of cable subscription, but it should benefit the PBA in the long run.

This is already the third season of the PBA’s television contract with TV5, and expectations should rise a bit after the banner season of 2012-13. And with the new broadcast setup, expect great matchups and high-end basketball action in all platforms.

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