by Waylon Galvez
Manila, Philippines – Petron Blaze’s Arwind Santos bagged the Best Player of the Conference award in this season-ending PBA Governors’ Cup, winning his second plum after accumulating 1,202 points from a combined Statistical Points and votes yesterday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The BPC award was the second for the 6-foot-3 forward, winning it first back in the 2011 Governors’ Cup. Santos, now on his seventh season, also became the 13th player in PBA history to win multiple BPCs.
Santos averaged 12.6 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.3 shot blocks and 1.1 steals as the Boosters topped the elimination round with an 8-1 record.
With his BPC victory, Santos automatically joins fellow BPC winners this 38th season Jayson Castro of Talk ’N Text (Philippine Cup) and LA Tenorio of Ginebra (Commissioner’s Cup) as the three candidates for this season’s Most Valuable Player (MVP).
On the other hand, San Mig Coffee’s Marqus Blakely bagged the Bobby Parks-Best Import award with 1,322 points, beating Petron Blaze’s Elijah Millsap (937 points). Blakely became the fifth import in team history to win the award.
The MVP, as well as Rookie of the Year, Most Improved Player, Sportsmanship Award, All-Defensive Team and the Mythical First and Second teams will be named when the PBA honors the season’s top performers on Friday before Game 4 of the PBA Governor’s Cup Finals Series at the Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City.
Santos edged two Petron Blaze teammates for the BPC plum.
This includes 6-foot-10 rookie center June Mar Fajardo (777 points) and guard Alex Cabagnot (558 points). Tenorio, who led all contenders in the SP category with an average of 32.7 points, placed fourth with 457 points while Globalport’s Jay Washington finished fifth (388 points).
Santos, who was second in SP with 31.4 points, got the most votes from media with 556 points, his fellow players with 87 points, and the PBA Commissioner’s Office with 150 points. The SP accounts for 40%, media vote 30%, players’ vote 25% and Commissioner’s Office 5%.
Blakely, who lost the award to Jamelle Cornley of Rain or Shine last season’s Governors’ Cup, is the fifth player in team history to receive the Best Import after Denzel Bowles (2012 Commissioner’s Cup), Marquin Chandler (‘05-‘06 Fiesta Cup), Derrick Brown (‘00 and ‘02 Governors’ Cup) and Kenny Redfield (‘94 Commissioner’s Cup).