Finals MVP Chris Ross mad at himself for allowing Tenorio to hit treys late in Game 5
Chris Ross deflects the credit after winning the Finals MVP award. Jerome Ascano

CHRIS Ross deflected the credit after winning the PBA Press Corps Finals MVP award, thanking his San Miguel Beer teammates for simply making him look good against Ginebra in their title series.

The veteran SMB playmaker delivered another all-around performance in the title-clinching 91-85 Game Five win on Sunday night when he scattered 12 points highlighted by two triples, 10 assists, eight boards, and six steals with less than two minutes of rest.

Despite stuffing the stats sheet, the league’s reigning Defensive Player of the Year insisted he could’ve done better especially in the payoff period.

“Actually, I didn't play too well on defense in the fourth,” Ross said. “I left my man a few times. LA (Tenorio) hit a couple of threes. I was mad at myself.”

“But my teammates had my back,” he added. “We made enough stops at the end and we got the rebound and we were able to finish those guys off.”

[See SMB completes title hat-trick after holding off Ginebra in Game Five]

That’s why he wants to share his second straight all-Filipino conference Finals MVP to his fellow starters – June Mar Fajardo, Arwind Santos, Marcio Lassiter, and Alex Cabagnot.

“It’s totally a team effort man,” Ross said. “It all starts from June Mar. We all benefit from his greatness. All the attention he gets? It all just trickles down, man – Arwind spaces the floor for us, Marcio spaces the floor for us. Alex makes plays.”

“I was hoping they'd give out five MVPs,” he added. “Our starters did so much, we played so many minutes, and I was just hoping we all five could get a trophy. But the good thing is we won, man. That's the main thing. Everyone wanted to win and end it tonight.”

[See Tim Cone admits: 'SMB simply overwhelmed us']

Still, it was Ross who shone brightest in a team studded with stars in closing out the Gin Kings in five games.

“As a team, we just wanted to end it tonight,” Ross said. “Whatever it took, we just wanted to end it cause we know what type of team they have, what type of coach they have. We don't wanna give them any momentum. We just want to end it. And I told the guys to just win each possession. From the beginning of the game, let's win every possession and let's have each other's back.


“And that's what we did,” he added. “All those stats? They don't mean a thing to me. The main thing for me is winning. That's why I'd rather have my teammates score.”

Spoken like a true unselfish playmaker.

Follow the writer on Twitter: @KarloSacamos