CALVIN Abueva looks set to boost his numbers and solidify his bid to become the first rookie to win Best Player of the Conference honors right in his first tournament as a pro.
Petron’s hardworking forward Arwind Santos remains on top of the standings with 35.1 statistical points at the end of the quarterfinals on Sunday, but his chance at the award has been ended by the Boosters' exit at the quarterfinal stage.
Abueva is the statistical leader among players still active in the conference with 32.3, although the top 10 in the race features a handful of Talk N Text players that could still vault to the top.
Alaska and Talk N Text begin their semifinal battle on Wednesday, with several Texters led by Jason Castro and Kelly Williams also in the running for the conference’s top individual award.
As the only rookie in the top five, Abueva has an opportunity to match the feat Eric Menk achieved during the 1999 season when he won All-Filipino Best Player of the Conference honors in his debut tournament in the league.
Only four players have won the award in their rookie year, with Marlou Aquino the first one to pull off the feat in the 1996 Governors Cup and Danny Seigle the last one to do it in the 1996 Governors Cup.
Only the top five players in statistical points at the end of the semifinals will be eligible for the individual award.
Statistics form 40 percent of the criteria in the selection of the best player, with 30% coming from media votes, 25% from players’ votes, and the remaining five percent from the Commissioner’s Office.