By REYNALD MAGALLON
The last two individuals named as the league’s Most Valuable Players saw themselves crowding each other for the race for the 47th Season’s top award.
June Mar Fajardo and Scottie Thompson finished 1-2 in the statistical race for the MVP award with the season entering its homestretch in the season-ending conference.
Fajardo, a six-time MVP, collecting it in consecutive fashion from 2014 to 2019 keeps hold of the lead over closest pursuer in the reigning MVP in Thompson. The 6-foot-10 center finished the first two conferences still in the pole with 28.9 statistical points while the Kings’ heart and soul, previously third in the race, leaped to the second with 24.9 SPs.
The SMB big man won Best Player of the Conference in the All-Filipino while also leading the Beermen back to the Philippine Cup throne after a grueling seven-game Finals showdown against the TNT Tropang Giga. He also capped an already splendid conference with a Finals MVP citation.
Buoyed by his own BPC award along with a Commissioner’s Cup title for Ginebra, Thompson also made a good case for a possible back-to-back MVP plum when he overtook SMB’s CJ Perez for the second spot.
Perez, though, is not too far behind in third place with 24.6 SPs followed by NorthPort star Robert Bolick at the fourth place with 23.2 SPs. Thompson’s running mate and fellow Comm’s Cup BPC contender Jamie Malonzo rounded up the top 5 with 21.9 SPs.
Commissioner’s Cup Finals MVP Christian Standhardinger ended up at the sixth spot with 21.1 SPs while Mikey William zoomed in to the seventh place with 20.6 SPs, just a hairline ahead of Standhardinger’s frontcourt partner Japeth Aguilar who is at the eighth with 20.4 SPs.
TNT’s RR Pogoy and NLEX’s Don Trollano completed the top 10 with 20.2 and 20.28 SPs respectively.