In the ongoing PBA Philippine Cup, had there been a tie or ties for the No. 2 and No. 8 spots at the end of the eliminations, the tied teams would have played in a playoff or a series of playoffs to break the ties and determine their final placings. Ties for any other place not decided by a playoff are broken by the PBA quotient.

But what exactly is the PBA quotient?

A lot of PBA followers believe that the PBA quotient and point differentials are one and the same. They are not.

For example, we want to break a three-way tie between Teams A, B and C to determine their rankings. The three teams met once with their games posting the following scores:

Team A winning over Team B, 98-94.

Team B winning over Team C, 110-101.

Team C winning over Team A, 84-79.

Not a few believe that we get the PBA quotient by getting the margins posted in the games played among the tied teams. In this scenario, Team A will have -1 (+4, -5); Team B +5 (-4, +9); Team C  -4 (-9, +5). They are not PBA quotients. These values are the point differentials.

The PBA quotient is actually total points for divided by total points against. For Team A, it is 0.994 (98+79/94+84); Team B 1.025 (94+110/98+101); Team C 0.979 (101+84/110+79).

In this case, we got the same result, meaning Team B ranked highest, followed by Team A and Team C. This is true for most cases, but depending on the scores, there are times when the point differential results will give a different ranking than the PBA quotient.

If the tied teams still end up tied after getting their PBA quotients, then we get their quotient from all their games played. In the very remote possibility that they are still tied, a coin toss will break the tie.