In the Philippine Basketball Association, or PBA, there are three conferences throughout the season. This is different than the NBA format many audiences are used to (one regular season finished with Playoffs and Finals) and allows for up to three separate champions.
The Philippine Cup is the first leg of the PBA season and the most popular PBA conference, as it's entirely local. Meanwhile, the Commissioner’s Cup is the second conference of the campaign and draws a large number of bets from local and international bettors, as "import" players are allowed. The Governor's Cup is the third leg of the PBA season and also allows import players, but it seems to be the least popular conference for gambling action.
Filipinos can bet on the 2023 Commissioner’s Cup through licensed offshore sportsbooks. These brands support betting lines on all PBA games throughout the season, including Commissioner's Cup prop bets and PBA Commissioner's Cup futures bets. This page is all about betting on basketball and the Commissioner’s Cup, and it includes information on the season layout, the teams involved, and more.
Can I Legally Bet On The PBA Commissioner’s Cup In The Philippines?
Philippines residents are legally allowed to bet on the Commissioner’s Cup, bet on the Governor's Cup, or bet on the Philippine Cup through licensed offshore sportsbooks, as domestic online operators (aka POGOs) cannot accept Filipinos. This leaves licensed offshore sites as the premier basketball betting options. Philippine gambling laws permit the use of offshore sites as long as they are licensed and regulated in their own countries, as all our recommended books are.
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2023 Commissioner's Cup Odds
The 2023 Commissioner's Cup calendar dates and schedule are both TBA. However, once the tournament gets underway, you'll find all the best Commissioner's Cup odds at the top-rated online Philippine sportsbook sites. Also, be sure to check back here for 2023 Commissioner's Cup futures and other interesting PBA prop bets!
2022 Commissioner's Cup Update
Due to coronavirus delays, the PBA Commissioner's Cup 2021 was canceled. However, the Commissioner's Cup 2022 campaign will be contested in full, though its start date is going to likely be pushed back to the fall and is currently TBA.
Since this year's PBA Commissioner Cup conference could spill into 2023, you may see the 2022 season referred to as the 2022-2023 Commissioner's Cup at many sites.
How To Bet On The Commissioner's Cup
You can easily wager on the Commissioner's Cup at any top offshore sports betting site. Any of the books listed here fit the bill, and each of them offers comprehensive odds on the popular PBA conference.
All you need to do to sign up is have a modern computer or mobile device, an Internet connection, and a few spare pesos (though we recommend Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies), and you can be betting in no time.
Once you've chosen one or more sportsbooks and have gone through the five-minute signup process, you'll have access to all the typical basketball bet types you expect. These include:
- Spread Bets
- Straight Bets (aka Moneyline Bets)
- Totals Bets (aka Over/Under Bets)
- Player Prop Bets
- Team Prop Bets
- Futures Bets
The best online Philippine sportsbooks support single-game wagering, multi-game parlays, cross-sport parlays, and more. Unfortunately, the top bookmakers don't currently offer deposit bonuses to Filipino bettors due to national restrictions, but you'll still find the best odds, the most valuable lines, and by far the most betting options on Commissioner's Cup action when you use these overseas sports betting services.
History Of The PBA Commissioner’s Cup
The Commissioner’s Cup was first introduced to the Philippine Basketball Association back during the 1993 season. The first-ever winner of the Commissioner’s Cup was the Swift/Sunkist franchise. Some of the other early winners include Purefoods (1994), Alaska Aces (1996), Gordon’s Gin Boars (1997), San Miguel Beermen (1999-2000), and Red Bull Thunder (2001-2002).
In 2003, the Invitational Championship was reinstated as the PBA’s second conference, leading to the Commissioner’s Cup's obsolescence. However, it was brought back in 2011 when the PBA decided to return to a three-conference season.
In 2020, due to massive delays to the sporting industry in the Philippines as a result of the spread of the Wuhan coronavirus, the PBA season was almost completely derailed. As a result, the 2020 Commissioner's Cup was canceled, as was the 2021 Commissioner's Cup. The 2022 Commissioner's Cup schedule is TBA, though the PBA currently intends for the conference to return this year.
The Format of The PBA Commissioner’s Cup
The PBA Commissioner's Cup conference has undergone several changes regarding format, but the current one follows the model installed in 1998 with one exception. Originally, there was a quarterfinal-semifinal playoff where the top two seeded teams would advance to the semis automatically.
The following four teams would battle it out in the quarterfinals. The winning two teams would then face the top two seeds in a best-of-5 series. The semifinal winners played a best-of-7 series in the Finals.
In 2011, this format was adopted again after a brief hiatus. However, the tournament Playoff format was changed again in 2013. Instead of the top two seeds automatically advancing to the semifinals, they gain a twice-to-beat advantage against the lowest two seeded teams. All other Playoff competitors play a best-of-3 series.
2023 Commissioner's Cup Teams
The following list represents the current PBA teams. While these should be the same clubs participating next year, branding and licensing rights can often result in team name changes one year to the next (as was the case with the Alaska Aces being taken over by Converge ICT and renamed to the Converge FiberXers for 2022).
The current PBA teams as of 2023 are as follows:
- Barangay Ginebra San Miguel – Ginebra San Miguel, Inc.
- Blackwater Bossing – Ever Bilena Cosmetics, Inc.
- Converge FiberXers – Converge ICT (formerly Alaska Aces)
- Magnolia Hotshots – San Miguel Pure Foods Company, Inc.
- Meralco Bolts – Manila Electric Company
- NLEX Road Warriors – Metro Pacific Investments Corp.
- NorthPort Batang Pier – Sultan 900 Capital, Inc.
- Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters – Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, Inc.
- Rain or Shine Elasto Painters – Asian Coatings Philippines, Inc.
- San Miguel Beermen – San Miguel Brewery, Inc.
- Terrafirma Dyip – Terrafirma Realty Development Corp.
- TNT Tropang Giga – Smart Communications
Recap: 2019 Commissioner’s Cup
The 2019 Commissioner's Cup was the most recent PBA Commissioner's Cup tournament to be contested. These were the 12 teams that competed for the 2019 Commissioner’s Cup, with their final records in parentheses:
- TNT KaTropa (10-1)
- NorthPort Batang Pier (9-2)
- Blackwater Elite (7-4)
- Barangay Ginebra San Miguel (7-4)
- Magnolia Hotshots (5-6)
- Rain or Shine Elasto Painters (5-6)
- San Miguel Beermen (5-6)
- Alaska Aces (4-7)
- Meralco Bolts* (4-7)
- Phoenix Pulse Fuel Masters* (4-7)
- Columbian Dyip* (3-8)
- NLEX Road Warriors* (3-8)
The four last-place teams above did not make the Commissioner's Cup playoff. The 2019 Commissioner's Cup tournament, featuring the eight best teams in the league, was structured as follows:
- TNT (1) def. Alaska (8) 1-1
- Barangay Ginebra (4) def. Magnolia (5) 2-0
- San Miguel (7) def. NorthPort (2) 2-0
- Rain or Shine (6) def. Blackwater (3) 2-1
- TNT def. Barangay Ginebra 3-1
- San Miguel def. Rain or Shine 3-1
- San Miguel def. TNT 4-2
Commissioner’s Cup Betting FAQs
When was the 2021 PBA Commissioner's Cup?
Unfortunately, the 2021 Commissioner's Cup was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, marking the second straight Commissioner's Cup to be canceled as a result of COVID-19 lockdowns and quarantines.
When is the 2022 PBA Commissioner's Cup?
The 2022 PBA Commissioner's Cup should be contested as normal, though with a start date later in the year than usual. The conference will take place immediately after the conclusion of the 2022 Philippine Cup. All tournament schedules for the 2022 PBA season are TBA.
Which teams have won the PBA Commissioner's Cup most recently?
The San Miguel Beermen won it all in 2019, while Barangay Ginebra San Migeul won in 2017-2018. The Beermen were champions in 2016-2017, and the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters took home the title in 2015-2016. Overall, there is good parity in the Commissioner's Cup, preventing any team from reigning for more than a couple of seasons in a row.
Are Commissioner's Cup teams allowed to import players?
Yes. PBA teams can import players from around the world as long as they are within the 6’10” height limit imposed by the league. This is the same rule used in the Governors' Cup (though the Governors' Cup has an import height limit of 6'5"), but it differs from the Philippine Cup, which does not allow any players to be imported from other countries.
Which teams are favored to win the next Commissioner's Cup?
It's impossible to tell this early on, especially since the Commissioner's Cup will have taken two years off once the 2022 season starts. That said, the San Miguel Beermen are projected by most analysts to repeat as champions. Of course, you won't be able to find actual 2022 Commissioner's Cup betting odds until 2022, and the field (or court) of play should be a lot more clear by then in terms of favorites and underdogs.
Which teams have won the most Commissioner’s Cup championships?
The San Miguel Beermen have the most Commissioner's Cup titles with four, and they are the most recent champions (2019). The Alaska Aces and Purefoods/B-Meg/San Miguel Coffee franchises have three titles each, while several teams (Swift/Sunkist, Red Bull, Talk 'N Text, Barangay Ginebra San Miguel) have two apiece.