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FAJARDO STILL LEADS BEST PLAYER CONTENDERS

05:35 PM February 14, 2014

Petron Blaze sophomore center June Mar Fajardo, staying the stats race leader at the end of the semifinals, banners the official list of candidates for the Best Player of the Conference award in the PLDT myDSL PBA Philippine Cup.

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And for keeping their own spots in the Top Five, another Petron stalwart Arwind Santos, Barangay Ginebra Twin Towers Japeth Aguilar and Greg Slaughter and GlobalPort’s Jay Washington have also become official BPC candidates.

They now contend for the award through the balloting of PBA officials, players and the sports media. The BPC winner will be named before Game Four of the Rain or Shine-San Mig Coffee series on Feb. 21.

Fajardo led all comers with an average of 38.8 statistical points per outing while Santos finished second (35.8), improving from a tie for third place with Slaughter through the elimination round.

Aguilar, with a dip in his performance in the semifinals, came in third (35.2), followed by Washington (34.5) and Slaughter (33.6).

Santos and Washington are in the running for a third and a second BPC award, respectively.

Narrowly missing the Top Five was reigning Philippine Cup BPC Jason Castro (32.2).

Rain or Shine, meanwhile, proved to be a real balanced unit as not a single RoS player landed in the Top 20 though rocketing into the Finals on a 16-4 win-loss ride from the elims.

San Mig Coffee, the other team making the best-of-seven titular series, is led statistically by guard Mark Barroca, No. 8 in the overall stats race with an average of 29.0.

Another San Mig player in the Top 20 is Peter June Simon (25.8).

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Others in the Top 20 are Sonny Thoss (30.1), Asi Taulava (29.7), Sol Mercado (28.7), Ranidel de Ocampo (28.5), LA Tenorio (28.0), Marc Pingris (27.6), Alex Cabagnot (27.06), Nino Canaleta (27.059), Marcio Lassiter (27.050), Gabby Espinas (26.5), Joseph Yeo (26.3) and Gary David (26.2).

Next to Slaughter among the rookies is Terrence Romeo (22.2) followed by Raymond Almazan (19.5), Ian Sangalang (19.3), and Alex Nuyles (16.5). (SB)

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