Sunday, July 29, 2012

37th PBA Leo Awards: And the winners are...

MVP! MVP! MVP!
First off, did we call it or what? Okay, so we missed the most important one because we took the outside factors a little too seriously-- forgetting that Kris Aquino et. al no longer cares for who wins the award *cough, cough, wink wink*.

All Defensive Team
PG Ryan Reyes, SG Jireh Ibanes, SF Arwind Santos, PF Marc Pingris, C Doug Kramer
Okay, didn't really see the Ibanes pick not because our boy from UP isn't a good one-on-one defender (he is, just under-rated and little played) but because you don't really see darkhorses pop up out of nowhere in these sort of awards nights. Well deserved for everyone.

2nd Mythical Team 
PG Paul Lee, SG Jayson Castro, SF Jeff Chan, PF Kelly Williams, C Sonny Thoss
Can't argue with this one. Marcio Lassiter could've easily gotten one of the guard spots had it not been for his GovCup injury. Ditto with Chris Lutz.

Mythical Team
SG Mark Caguioa, SG Gary David, SF James Yap, PF Arwind Santos, PF Ranidel de Ocampo
A little non-traditional but still this year's best. Don't know about Ranidel de Ocampo because of all of his inconsistencies but it's really just a toss-up between him and Thoss for the best big man today title.

Sportsmanship Award: JVee Casio (Powerade)
This writer feels that the league as a whole is still trying to win Casio, his family and supporters over after the dreaded Wyne-gate. :)

Most Improved Player: Jeff Chan (Rain or Shine)
From a solid rotation player to a bonafide sharpshooter, Chan is the most deserving of the lot and this was a no-brainer. Doug Kramer came up big this year, but Chan made that giant leap from bit player to National Team specialist.

Defensive Player of the Year: Marc Pingris (BMeg)
Prior to this evening's meltdown, Pingris has further solidified his claim as the equivalent of the Boston Celtics' Kevin Garnett-- defensively. This writer will never forget how Pingris pretty much made Mark Cardona his bitch in the Commissioner's Cup playoffs. Just a monstrous effort that took Cardona out of it. Though he's having a lot of trouble handling Beau Belga and JayR Quinahan of the Rain or Shine Elastopainters, Pingris' makes up for his lack of offensive basketball IQ (and even smart, precision defense) with hustle and energy.

Rookie of the Year: Paul Lee (Rain or Shine)
Anytime you enter a team and instantly take over, you should win the Rookie of the Year award regardless of the competition. Marcio Lassiter and JVee Casio had the (mis)fortune of playing with main man Gary David. Chris Lutz was part of a stacked Petron that would've won a bunch of games even if they opted to bring in Jason Ballesteros instead. Paul Lee? He's just Paul Lee. The Truth. Angas ng Tondo.

Most Valuable Player: Mark Caguioa, Barangay Ginebra
Finally. It took him 11 years and a couple of near-finishes. But Ginebra, despite all of its' superstars, wouldn't have won shit with their shitty coaching and even shittier rotations had it not been for Caguioa's drive to win. Oh, and he's managed to humble himself too.

Gary David enjoyed a monstrous year, but you can't just shoot your way to an MVP all the time. Still, the overall respect and recognition was well-earned and well-deserved.

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