By JONAS TERRADO
Magnolia Pambansang Manok’s Calvin Abueva claimed the biggest award since his reinstatement after being named the PBA Philippine Cup’s Davco-Best Player of the Conference Wednesday.
Abueva received the award from PBA Commissioner Willie Marcial before Game 4 of the Philippine Cup Finals after compiling 934 points – enough to beat out TNT rookie Mikey Williams and Magnolia teammate Ian Sangalang.
Williams finished second with 843 points while Sangalang had 591 points to place third. NorthPort’s Robert Bolick settled for fourth (447) with San Miguel Beer’s June Mar Fajardo fifth (403).
It was Abueva’s second BPC plum which came a year after he was allowed to resume his PBA career following an indefinite ban that lasted 16 months.
He also won it in his first conference with the Hotshots, who benefited from the different dimension Abueva brought the moment he was traded from the Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters last February.
Abueva averaged 14.7 points, 10.0 rebounds and 2.6 assists through the third game of Magnolia’s title series with TNT, numbers that helped him lead the BPC derby until the end of the semis.
He also became the sixth player from the Purefoods franchise to bag the BPC after Jerry Codinera, Alvin Patrimonio, Rey Evangelista, James Yap and fellow Hotshot Paul Lee.
But Abueva has bigger goals in mind as he hopes to lead Magnolia to the championship against TNT in the ongoing best-of-seven title series.
The nine-year veteran got 415 points from the stats and was ahead in the votes of the PBA Press Corps with 440 points. But Abueva was only second in player votes with 54 and third in the voting from the Commissioner’s Office with 25.
Williams fell short of becoming the fourth rookie to capture the BPC, placing fourth in stats (389) and second in media votes (245). But Williams, who turned 30 on the same day, was ahead in votes from the players (59) and the PBA Commissioner’s Office (150).
Sangalang was a distant third after placing third in stats (401), media (82) and players (33) and second in votes from the league office (75).
Under PBA rules, forty percent of the stats will be used to determine the BPC while the rest will come from votes from the press corps (30%), players (25%) and the Commissioner’s Office (5%).