ASEAN Basketball League

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ASEAN Basketball League (ABL)
Current season, competition or edition:
Current sports event 2015–16 ABL season
ASEAN Basketball League.png
Sport Basketball
Founded 2009
Owner(s) Tune Group
No. of teams 7
Country  Thailand (2 teams)
 Malaysia (1 team)
 Philippines (1 team)
 Singapore (1 team)
 Chinese Taipei (1 team)
 Vietnam (1 team)
Continent FIBA Asia (Asia)
Most recent
champion(s)
Malaysia Westports Malaysia Dragons (1st title)
Most titles Thailand Hi-Tech Bangkok City (2 titles)
Official website ASEANBasketballLeague.com

The ASEAN Basketball League, often abbreviated to the ABL, is a men's professional basketball league in Southeast Asia and Taiwan. Six clubs from six different countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) competed in the league's 2009 inaugural season.[1] The league was proposed in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and launched on 1 October 2009.[1]

Logo used for the first season with General Electric as the title sponsor.

History[edit]

Formation[edit]

Basketball officials from 6 ASEAN nations gathered in Metro Manila on 1 September 2009 to officially launch the new league.[citation needed]

Teams that participated in the inaugural season were the Brunei Barracudas, Kuala Lumpur Dragons, Philippine Patriots, SM BritAma, Thailand Tigers and former National Basketball League team, the Singapore Slingers. Mirroring the Euroleague in the west, the ABL has its own set of rules in terms of its roster makeup and salary caps. Teams are permitted two imports of non-ASEAN citizenship, three ASEAN imports, one player with one Southeast Asian parent, and seven local players. Teams are allowed to field a team of all local players if they wish to do so.[citation needed]

In July 2012, the league announced that Kuhan Foo, CEO since the ABL's inception, was moving on to a position leading additional regional sports properties. In his place, the league named Anthony Macri as the next CEO, and he will lead the ABL into Season 4 in early 2013, but after one season he left the league to rejoin his family in the US.[citation needed]

League expansion[edit]

On 22 September 2011, the Brunei Barracudas announced that they were bowing out of the third season of ABL after participating for 2 seasons.[citation needed]

On 20 October 2011, the Saigon Sports Academy officially announced the participation of Saigon Heat into the third season of ABL, making them the first ever international professional basketball team to represent Vietnam.[citation needed]

In 2012, San Miguel Beermen and Bangkok Cobras joined the league aside from Saigon Heat. Unfortunately, after one season, the Cobras left the league with the Beermen leaving after winning the title in 2013.

In 2014, Laskar Dreya South Sumatra (INA) joined ABL, but they left after the 2014 season.

In 2015, Pilipinas MX3 Kings and Mono Vampire joined the league.

On 17 July 2016, it was announced that Kaohsiung Truth, a team from Kaohsiung, Taiwan will participate in the 2016–17 season. This will be the first time that a team outside Southeast Asia will compete in the league.[2]

League format[edit]

Logo used from the second to the third season with AirAsia as the title sponsor.

The league, as of the 2015–16 season, is held via a quadruple home and away format where each team faces each other four times during regular season; as such the number of total games per regular season varies depending on the number of participating teams in that year. At the end of the regular season, the four teams with the best records qualifies for the playoffs. In the best-of-three semifinals, the top 2 seeds will have the home court advantage against the lower seeds and will host the first and third (if necessary) games. In the first season, the finals was a best-of-five series, with the higher seed hosting the first two and the fifth (if necessary) games. The Finals format was changed to a best of three series for the second and third seasons, where the higher-ranked team earns home-court advantage and hosts the first and third (if necessary) games. For the fourth season, it will be a quadruple home and away format where each team faces each other 4 times with the semis,a best-of-five, and the finals, a best-of-five series. In the fifth season, the playoff format was changed into a best-of-3 format both in the semi-finals and the finals. Starting in the sixth season, the league reverted its playoff format to a best-of-3 in the semi-finals and a best-of-5 series in the finals, similar to the first season's playoff format.[citation needed]

The champions are supposed to represent the Southeast Asia Basketball Association (SEABA) in the FIBA Asia Champions Cup. However, since the tournament only limits one club per country, the 2010 champions Philippine Patriots were disallowed from participating since the Smart Gilas Philippine team had already qualified. In 2011, the Chang Thailand Slammers were supposed to represent SEABA but the Thailand Basketball Federation was then suspended by FIBA; this caused the Westports KL Dragons to represent SEABA, as the runner-up Patriots' slot was already taken by the Smart Gilas.[citation needed]

Teams[edit]

ASEAN Basketball League is located in Southeast Asia
Kings (alternate)
Kings (alternate)
Kings (former)
Kings (former)
Laskar Dreya (alt)
Laskar Dreya (alt)
Laskar Dreya
Laskar Dreya
Locations of ABL teams. Red pogs for current teams, while blue pogs for former teams. (Correct as of 2016–17 season)
Team City / Region Arena (capacity) Founded Joined ABL Head coach
Thailand Hi-Tech Bangkok City Bangkok Thai-Japanese Stadium, Bangkok (5,000)
Hi-Tech Gym, Bangkok (500)
2009 2009 Philippines Jing Ruiz
Chinese Taipei Kaohsiung Truth Kaohsiung Kaohsiung Arena, Kaohsiung (15,000) 2016 2016
Thailand Mono Vampire Basketball Club Bangkok Mono Vampire Gym, Bangkok (1,000)
Chulalongkorn University Gymnasium, Bangkok (2,000)
Sripatum University Stadium, Bangkok (2,000)
2014 2015 Thailand Mawinporn Soonphonthont
Philippines Pilipinas MX3 Kings San Juan City San Juan Gym (2,000)
Malolos Convention Center, Malolos, Bulacan (5,000)
2015 2015 Philippines Jack Santiago
Vietnam Saigon Heat Ho Chi Minh City CIS Arena, Ho Chi Minh City (2,500) 2011 2012 England Anthony Garbelotto
Singapore Singapore Slingers Singapore OCBC Arena, Kallang (3,000) 2006 2009 Singapore Neo Beng Siang
Malaysia Westports Malaysia Dragons Kuala Lumpur MABA Stadium, Kuala Lumpur (2,500) 2009 2009

Former teams[edit]

[citation needed]

Champions[edit]

The finals was a best-of-5 (2–2–1) series (2010, 2013, 2016–present), it became best-of-3 (1–1–1) series from 2011–12 and 2014.

Season Finalists Semifinalists
Country Champions Result Country Runners-up Country Semifinalist Country Semifinalist
2009–10  PHI Philippine Patriots^ 3–0  INA Satria Muda BritAma  SIN Singapore Slingers  MAS Kuala Lumpur Dragons
2010–11  THA Chang Thailand Slammers^ 2–0  PHI AirAsia Philippine Patriots  MAS Westports KL Dragons  SIN Singapore Slingers
2012  INA Indonesia Warriors 2–1  PHI San Miguel Beermen^  PHI AirAsia Philippine Patriots  MAS Westports Malaysia Dragons
2013  PHI San Miguel Beermen^ 3–0  INA Indonesia Warriors  MAS Westports Malaysia Dragons  THA Sports Rev Thailand Slammers
2014  THA Hi-Tech Bangkok City 2–0  MAS Westports Malaysia Dragons^  SIN Singapore Slingers  VIE Saigon Heat
2015–16  MAS Westports Malaysia Dragons^ 3-2  SIN Singapore Slingers  THA Hi-Tech Bangkok City  VIE Saigon Heat
  • ^ finished regular season with the best win-loss record.

References[edit]

External links[edit]