HE didn’t expect his latest feat, but it doesn’t mean he didn’t want it.
Willie Miller won the PBA’s Sportsmanship Award during the annual Leo Awards on Saturday at the Smart-Araneta Coliseum.
But the Barako Bull guard wasn’t there to receive his award — not because of anything else.
Miller was busy covering the lone NCAA men’s basketball match in the day between University of Perpetual and San Sebastian, as a TV analyst.
The Energy guard was in the middle of the coverage when the good news got to him.
“Tinawag lang sa akin during the game,” Miller said in a chat with Spin.ph after the Altas’ 82-79 win.
Miller said he maintained his focus on analyzing the game despite the development.
“Hindi, hindi. Focus pa rin tayo,” he smiled. Puro kalokohan pa rin.”
Miller admitted he was surprised of the feat, which is an addition to his trophy case that already has two league MVPs.
“Mabait ba ako? Hindi ko nga alam eh,” he said before bursting into laughter. “Ewan ko nga e. parang pang-retire (na award)."
Then he turned serious, recalling the time he was inspired by Rey Evangelista's example back when the former Purefoods forward won the award at a time when Miller was still starting in the league with Red Bull.
“Makikita mo naman sa laro kung gaano siya kabait, hindi umaangal sa referee, sa mga kakampi, hindi walang-hiya maglaro, so sabi ko nakakatuwa pala yung ganung award.”
“Tapos hindi ko in-expect na mananalo ako,” he added. “So ganun din 'yung ginawa ko, kasi wala ka namang magagawa kung aangal ka pa sa referee o magiging magulo ka pa sa court eh. You just have to enjoy the game na lang. Yun siguro ang nakapag-panalo sa award.”
It was an early birthday present for Miller, who turns 37 on July 13.