For Fajardo, BPC award won’t ease pain of missing PH Cup Finals
MANILA, Philippines — June Mar Fajardo stood in the middle of the court on Friday before Game 4 of the finals to receive the the Best Player of the Conference plum, but he’d rather be playing instead.
The award was a welcome consolation after a bitter end to Petron Blaze’s (now San Miguel) campaign in the PBA Philippine Cup, but winning the championship still remains the top priority for Fajardo.
“A bit,” Fajardo answered when asked whether the award quenched the pain of missing the finale as the Boosters yielded to eventual-finalist Rain or Shine in the semifinals.
“It would’ve been better if we made it to the finals,” the gentle giant from Cebu admitted.
Fajardo solidified his hold of the no. 1 seed in the statistical points with a solid showing in the semifinals and a dip in performance from erstwhile no. 2 Japeth Aguilar.
But he didn’t churn out those double-double nights in the semis just to chase the award, he intented to tow Petron back into the finals though his efforts were ultimately for naught.
“I just always play to help my team every game. My goal is always to help the team win the championship.”
The citation, though, is nothing but a harbinger of things to come for Fajardo, who at 24, has already showcased such dominant form that it’s hard not to see him reigning in the league for the next decade.
He already has a head start in the race for the MVP this season, which his Boosters’ teammate Arwind Santos, the reigning MVP, took years in the league to achieve.
“It’s a big achievement for me,” Fajardo said. “I thank the management, the coaching staff for the time and trust and my teammates for always helping me.”
But Fajardo said that even if his individual accolades pile up, which won’t be surprising with his tremendous potential, his eyes will always be locked on the crown.
“The awards are just a reward for playing well, but the ultimate prize is winning the championship,” he said.