The Macau Black Bears, founded in 2017, are relatively a new basketball club, but their journey
has been a winding one.
The team started out in Nanhai as Chong Son Kung Fu in the 2017-18 ASEAN Basketball League
(ABL) season and immediately experienced a lot of success as the top team in the regular
season standings with a 15-5 record. Led by the likes of MVP-caliber players in Anthony Tucker
and Mikh McKinney, the team quickly made their presence as one of the top contending teams
known. Even after relocating to Macau and rebranding the team as the Black Bears, they
continued to strive for success.
Then, just as the Black Bears were stamping their brand in the basketball scene, the COVID
pandemic put everything on hold. The Black Bars, along with the ABL, were left to play the
waiting game to get back on the court.
“COVID has been a big hurdle for everyone around the world. But only with challenges comes
further success,” said Jackie Fung, Ownership Group of the Macau Black Bears. “We have big
plans for the future.”
Those plans will start to take shape as the Black Bears return to action in the 2023 ABL
Invitational early in the year. They’ll be playing in their first official game in OCBC Arena,
Singapore on 3 January 2023 at 8:00 PM GMT +8 facing the Saigon Heat from Vietnam.
Once that game tips off, you can certainly expect to see a rush of emotions from the Macau
“Everyone misses the ABL,” said Lukas Peng, General Manager of the Black Bears. “From the
staff, management, players, and fans, it’s obviously been a big part of Asian basketball and was
dearly missed for the last few years. To our team, this will be the beginning of big plans
we have for the future.”
The upcoming game against the Heat, as well as the other games the Black Bears are scheduled
to play in Singapore whether it’s against Hong Kong Eastern on 5 January 2023 at 8:00 PM GMT
+8, against NS Matrix Malaysia on 6 January 2023 at 8:00 PM GMT +8, or against Cooly Bangkok
Tigers on 8 January 2023 at 2:00 PM GMT +8, will bring back to the team what they have
missed so much about playing in this competition.
“[We missed] competing in front of the fans in different countries,” said Peng. “And winning.”
“Our fans should expect to see the same offensive high paced offense as they have in the past
as well as a team that will try and win every game even if we are outmatched talent-wise,”
As mentioned, the Black Bears have been able to win a good share of their games in the past.
They’ll still aim to do so in this upcoming season, but will also be aiming to firmly build a
foundation for the local basketball scene as well.
“We have shown to bring a consistent competitive roster over the years and plan to do so again
this season,” emphasize Fung. “We will focus more on developing local talent this year as well
but plan on competing in every game and will fight for every win as in the past.”
The emphasis on developing the local talents from Macau is clear to see throughout the
organization. In the previous years, Macau basketball fans have seen the likes of local
youngsters in Lai Ka Tong, Ieong Kei Long, and Lao Chon Pong suit up and take the court. Next
year, they can expect to see some more of their hometown heroes in action.
“Our fans in Macau haven’t been able to see their local team and players compete at a high
level for a long time,” said Peng. “We will have a roster with the most local Macau players in
club history and we hope that our fans will come support their development through this
“The 2023 ABL Invitational is our top competition and also the most important competition
for us and our fans in Macau. We plan to grow our franchise and fanbase along with the league
and see a bright future for Macau Basketball,” said Peng.