By Ivan Stewart Saldajeno
MANILA – San Miguel Beer’s veteran center June Mar Fajardo reclaimed the Philippine Basketball Association’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) award, beating last year’s winner Scottie Thompson and two others during the Leo Awards at Smart Araneta Coliseum in Quezon City on Sunday.
Fajardo amassed 2,248 points from statistical points (SPs) and the player and media votes.
Thompson ended up third with 1,539 points, just 20 behind Ginebra teammate Christian Standhardinger, who was second with 1,559.
CJ Perez wound up fourth with 1,177 points.
Thompson got the better of the player votes, but Fajardo topped the SPs race and media votes to seal his seventh MVP award.
Fajardo, who turns 34 on Nov. 17, was MVP for six consecutive seasons in 2014 to 2019 with San Miguel bagging at least one title within that stretch.
The four MVP finalists made up the First Team with another Gin King, Jamie Malonzo.
The Mythical Second Team consisted of Robert Bolick, Mikey Williams, Calvin Oftana, Calvin Abueva, and Arvin Tolentino.
Converge’s Justin Arana won Rookie of the Year while new Ginebra recruit Maverick Ahanmisi was Most Improved Player.
Standhardinger, Fajardo, Cliff Hodge, Jio Jalalon, and Chris Newsome made up the All-Defensive Team, while Kevin Alas won the Samboy Lim Sportsmanship Award. (PNA)