The Purefoods Corporation burst into the basketball scene when they joined the Philippine Amateur Basketball League (PABL) two years ago in 1986. When the Tanduay ballclub announces its gonna take a leave of absence beginning the 1988 PBA season, Purefoods acquired its rights and the contracts of six of the Tanduay players namely; Ramon Fernandez, Freddie Hubalde, Padim Israel, Willie Generalao, Jose Yango and Onchie Dela Cruz, and were able to lure the best amateur standouts for its maiden appearance in the PBA, an added bonus was the offer to Ramon Fernandez for his dual role as playing-coach of the team, as for their import in the Open Conference, company officials Rene Montemayor and Chot Reyes beat other teams in hiring the services of David Thirdkill, last year's best import who led Tanduay Rhum to the championship, one player Purefoods wanted to signed up was Alvin Patrimonio, and a tug-of-war between his amateur team RFM-Swifts and Purefoods has drawn reactions from both PBA officials and amateur cage officials, led by BAP president Lito Puyat, Patrimonio's projected stint in the pro league was finalized when the PBA and the BAP adopted a compromise apprenticeship program that would enable the likes of Patrimonio, Jerry Codinera, Jojo Lastimosa and Glenn Capacio to play in the pro league and at the same time still be available for international tournaments. The BAP ordered RFM-Swift's, Patrimonio's PABL team, to release him to the PBA without any conditions as he is set to don Purefoods' jersey come June 30.
Purefoods Hotdogs placed runner-up in the first two conferences of the season, they came so close of winning their first championship in a cinderalla fashion against San Miguel Beermen, the Hotdogs went up, 3-2 in the series but lost the final two games.
As the odds-on favorite to win the All-Filipino title, the Hotdogs lost to crowd-favorite and arch-rival Añejo Rum 65 in the finals where the center of controversy was the management's decision to bench their former playing-coach Ramon Fernandez starting Game two of the championship series.
March 22: The Purefoods Hotdogs registered the franchise' first official win, a 119-107 victory over Shell Helix, after an opening day blowout loss to San Miguel Beer.
April 5: In the much-awaited first meeting between Purefoods and Ginebra San Miguel, the Hotdogs prevailed, 116-110, for their third straight win after losing their opening game of the season.
May 8: David Thirdkill hit a buzzer-beating jumper as Purefoods nip Alaska, 120-119, for their third straight win in the semifinals of the Open Conference, the Hotdogs retain solo leadership with 9-wins and 4-losses.
May 22: Purefoods advances in the Open Conference finals with a 111-109 overtime win over arch rival Ginebra San Miguel.
July 3: In his second game as a pro, prize rookie Alvin Patrimonio scored 22 points as Purefoods beat Shell, 110-106.
July 12: Purefoods rallies from 19 points down to pull off a 114-110 win over Añejo Rum 65 (formerly Ginebra San Miguel) in their first meeting in the All-Filipino Conference.
August 11: Ramon Fernandez scored a conference-high 47 points in leading the Hotdogs to a 132-125 win over San Miguel at the start of the All-Filipino Conference semifinals.
August 18: Purefoods turn back Añejo Rum, 109-106, for their 11th victory in 16 games and two wins away from a first finals berth. The Hotdogs trailed, 102-106, with one minute left in the ballgame, Al Solis buried a triple to cut the deficit to a point with 50 seconds remaining which started Purefoods' final 7-0 windup.
October 23: Purefoods snapped out of their eight-game losing streak since the All-Filipino title playoffs with their first win in the Third Conference after six losses, the Hotdogs overcame Alaska import Willie Bland's 70 points in scoring a pulsating 148-147 overtime win over the Airmen, new hotdogs' import Kenny Travis played the hero's role and finished with 35 points while Perry Young topscored for Purefoods with 50 points.
Amateur standout Alvin Patrimonio finally debuted in the PBA on June 30.
After six games in the All-Filipino Conference, Playing coach Ramon Fernandez gave up his coaching chores to assistant Cris Calilan, Fernandez led the Hotdogs to a 3-3 won-loss card after the first round of eliminations.
Veteran Freddie Hubalde was traded to Shell for rookie Joshua Villapando in late July and with few weeks left before the end of the elimination round in the All-Filipino Conference.
Purefoods management bench Ramon Fernandez starting Game two of the All-Filipino finals series against Añejo Rum, Fernandez watch his team lose the finals series in Game four while sitting at courtside.
Barely a week after Purefoods lost to Añejo Rum in the All-Filipino finals series, Ramon Fernandez was traded to San Miguel Beer in exchange for Abet Guidaben, in a repeat of a similar trade that took place three years ago.