Updated: May 26, 2021
Vietnam Basketball Association has closed its last season in 2020 with the Champion Cup handed to Saigon Heat for the second time. This year, the 6th season has just finished its VBA Draft Combine 2021 and is ready for its first game in June with various new interesting rules and changes targeting an international standard in Vietnam’s basketball.
This year there will be a total of 8 teams, 1 more than last year: Sài Gòn Heat, Thăng Long Warriors, Cần Thơ Catfish, Đà Nẵng Dragons, Hồ Chí Minh City Wings, Hà Nội Buffaloes, Đà Nẵng Dragon, and lastly, Vietnam National Basketball Team. For 2021, with a mission to secure the gold medal in SEA Games 31, VBF has decided to hand-pick star players to the Vietnam National Basketball Team for practical and competitive preparation both mentally and physically. As a result, some of the other 7 teams had to recruit more potential players from the younger generation in the “Homegrown Qualified List”, which is also contributing to VBA’s goal of nurturing younger players’ passion for basketball.
After the Draft Combine 2021 where local and heritage players get to test their own limits and show their ability to the potential home team, the audience was left in anticipation of the changes in the line-up of every team. Coaches will be selecting, trading, and making deals with each other to obtain the best player and invest tickets for further selections for the next season. The Draft was live-streamed and gathered a lot of attention, as many changes were made that will either turn out to be a gift or a regret.
Some of the interesting new rules to the games include:
- Every team must have 2 slots for import players (non-Vietnamese players), 1 slot for heritage players (Vietnamese, who reside overseas, players), and 7-14 slots for local players with 3 homegrown players (self-grown players from each team).
- In terms of Import Players, the maximum is two per team and the combined height must be under 4m. This surprising rule was intentionally created in order to prevent using the import players’ height to overwhelm local players.
- 2 first and second teams in play-offs will automatically be in the semifinal. The next 4 teams will compete in play-offs to secure the last 2 chances in the semifinal.
With VBA receiving numerous sponsors from the biggest firms in the country, this showed the great investment that basketball lovers have put forward for the basketball industry in Vietnam. Tickets are being sold out quickly and there is definitely growing attention from the general population in Vietnam in basketball. The rising stars have come and ready to put all their passion into professional basketball careers and shine in VBA6.
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