ROY contender Matthew Wright opts to focus on salvaging 'frustrating' end to stellar rookie season
Matthew Wright is one of the strongest contenders to win Rookie of the Year but he's not focused on winning individual awards. Dante Peralta

ANTIPOLO City - Matthew Wright is one of the strongest contenders for the season's PBA Rookie of the Year award.

But the Phoenix shooter stressed there's more to life than just winning indvidual awards.

The prolific Fuel Masters rookie lamented that while he has a great shot at winning the once-in-a-lifetime honor, Phoenix's season came at an abrupt end Wednesday night when they lost to the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, 116-111, to bow out of contention for a quarterfinals berth in the PBA Governors Cup.

The team's eighth straight loss - a franchise record - spoiled a hot-shooting performance by Wright at the Ynares Center here after firing 5-of-7 from three-point range to finish with a game-high 36 points.

[SeeĀ Rain or Shine rides hot start and steady finish to send slumping Phoenix crashing out]

The Fuel Masters limped to a 2-10 record with a game left in their campaign opposite San Miguel.

"Missing the playoffs was pretty big, coming off a winning culture. I've won in every single level, high school, college, and pro," said the Fil-Canadian cadet member of Gilas Pilipinas.

"Ending my rookie year like this is really frustrating. We still have one game left, so hopefully we'll be able to salvage the season."

[See Vanguardia says Phelps injury doomed Phoenix]

Wright is currently one of the strong contenders for the Rookie of the Year honor along with TnT Katropa's Roger Pogoy and Jio Jalalon of Star.

The Phoenix star said he'll be grateful if he ever gets the award.

"I play everyday, i play every game with my heart's out. I'm super competitive. if that translate to an award, then good for me," said Wright.

"If I win it, then I win. If not, I wouldn't be surprised either. Anything can happen," he added.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @gerardmos