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    Underrated Arana at last gets his due with Player of Week honor

    Jan 1, 2013

    RYAN Arana's worth is being proven in each game he plays for Rain or Shine.

    And that was none more obvious than for the period December 24 to 30 when he helped the Elasto Painters rack up back-to-back wins that moved them within arm’s reach of a Finals berth in the PBA Philippine Cup.

    The southpaw guard out of De La Salle was doing it all in the semifinals duel with San Mig Coffee, scoring, assisting, swiping the ball, and making some hustle plays while taking his turn trying to shackle the likes of James Yap and PJ Simon.

    For his all-around effort, Arana was chosen as the last Accel-PBA Press Corps Player of the Week for 2012.

    “Si Ryan, he's the kind of player who doesn't complain about his playing time or the kind of role you want him to play and that makes him very welcome in our organization,” said Rain or Shine coach Yeng Guiao of his prized guard, the 12th pick overall in the 2007 draft. 

    “He has been known to be a scorer in his amateur days but here in the pros he's been doing a bit of everything, especially on defense,” added Guiao.

    “Iyung puntos darating at darating sa kanya iyon pero he now takes pride more in making the needed stops.” 

    The 29-year-old has indeed been stepping up in a team full of role players.

    Arana shared the limelight with teammates Gabe Norwood and Ronnie Matias in an 83-74  win in Game Four of the best-of-seven series last Thursday, when he scored 13 points, nine in the third quarter that helped Rain or Shine take a 54-36 lead. 

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    He spiked that output by stealing the ball thrice, hauling down two rebounds, and issuing as many feeds that propped the E-Painters' drive to a 3-1 series lead.

    That performance by Arana was reminiscent of his exploits the game before on Christmas Day, when scattered all eight of his points in the second quarter that boosted them to a 51-32 halftime lead on the way to a 98-72 victory.

    Arana went scoreless in Game Five last Saturday, a 67-79 loss that denied Rain or Shine outright entry to its second straight finals. But Guiao firmly believes Arana will bounce back in a big way on Game Six on Thursday.

    "He doesn't take too many days off," said Guiao.

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