Standhardinger set to win second PBA Best Player plum; Best Import award still a toss up
Christian Standhardinger is expected to be named Best Player of the Conference while it’s a toss-up between Justin Brownlee and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson for Best Import as the PBA names the winner of both awards before Game 4 of the Governors’ Cup Finals on Sunday.
Barring any surprises, Standhardinger will receive the Best Player plum for the second time in his career while there’s still a guessing game as to which import from the two finalists will be called as center court to be hailed as the conference’s top foreign player.
The announcement may serve as motivation for either Barangay Ginebra or TNT before the 6 p.m. tussle. Ginebra holds a 2-1 lead in the best-of-seven series.
Standhardinger topped the statistical points race from the eliminations all the way to the end of the semifinals as he took advantage of Japeth Aguilar’s injury earlier in the conference to lead Ginebra back in the Finals for a shot at a third Governors’ Cup title.
He had 44.2 after the semis to close in on repeating his BPC showing in the 2019 Governors’ Cup while playing for NorthPort.
Teammates Scottie Thompson and Jamie Malonzo, TNT’s RR Pogoy and San Miguel Beer’s CJ Perez were named candidates for the BPC.
Ginebra and its fans are hoping to see Brownlee secure a fourth career Best Import which would break his tie with former Meralco reinforcement Allen Durham for second most, trailing the late Bobby Ray Parks who won seven.
Standing in his way is Hollis-Jefferson, who replaced Jalen Hudson midway in the eliminations to lead TNT all the way to the championship series.
The former NBA player topped the statistical points derby with 57.1 followed by Brownlee’s 52.5. Also in the running are Meralco’s KJ McDaniels and San Miguel Beer’s Cameron Clark.
Forty-five percent of the stats will be used to determine the winner plus votes from the media (30%) and players (25%).