MVP – Greg Slaughter
Kiefer Ravena may be the popular or entertaining choice but the 7-foot giant perfectly captures the significance of the award. Averaging 14 points, 9 rebounds 1.3 assists and 2.3 blocks, Slaughter should be the consensus choice among teams, players and the UAAP board. The standout from Cebu sure has MVP numbers (collegiate standards) but his true effect on games cannot be quantified justly. There are no statistics for shots changed, penetrations prevented, double teams drawn or “hockey assists” (the pass that leads to the assist). His overwhelming size has been a big reason why Ateneo is where it’s at right now.
Center – Greg Slaughter
Forward – Alex Nuyles (15.25ppg, 4.5rpg, 2.6apg)
The high-leaping guard/forward has been the best player on the clear-cut 2nd best team of the league. Nuyles is Adamson’s most consistent player despite shooting 41.58% from the field and 60% from the foul line. He has shown great improvement on his jumpshot; combining great balance and high elevation to shoot over his defenders (check-out his game winner against DLSU). Nuyles also has proven why he is touted as one of the best perimeter defenders in the UAAP.
Guard – Kiefer Ravena (14.6ppg, 5rpg, 3.3apg, 1.5spg)
I cannot remember a rookie since MacMac Cardona and LA Tenorio that has made the same impact as The Phenom. Kiefer has been simply amazing on offense; flaunting staggering efficiency (46.6 FG% and 84.2 FT%). What has impressed me is how much he scores despite only getting few plays being called for him. This speaks volumes on how well he has adapted Norman Black’s system. Ravena also wasn’t a slouch on defense either, as he has stifled opposing guards and helped Ateneo bigs with his rebounding.
Guard – Jeric Fortuna (16ppg, 4.8rpg, 3.8apg, 1.1spg)
Did you see that moment when UST head coach Pido Jarencio carried Jeric Fortuna off the court and to their bench while Fortuna was suffering from cramps? That just shows how much Fortuna has taken over the leadership role in UST. He played his heart out during the first round and is now believed to be the best point guard in the league (yes, over last year’s MVP).
Doesn’t he remind you of Chauncy Billups?
The four players above are the clear-cut choices for belonging to the Mythical Five after the first round. Conventionally, one more forward should be there. If you look at statistics, it should be Bobby Ray Parks Jr.. I didn’t put him up there because I honestly believe that NU can win the same number of games without him (considering their current set-up). If you talk about helping the team win then choose between Eric Camson and Nico Salva.
But if it was only up to me, I would break the rules and put R.R. Garcia in the Mythical Five. Now you have the five best players of the first round.
Rookie of the Year – Kiefer Ravena
Playing beyond his years.
Defensive Player of the Year – Greg Slaughter
Again, there are no stats for shots changed and penetrations prevented. Just by his presence alone, Slaughter has made opponents shoot jumpshots.
DPOY Honorable Mention – Austin Manyara (4.0ppg, 5.8rpg, 2.8bpg)
Manyara has been Adamson’s defensive anchor and is currently leading the league in blocks. I would not be surprised if he took the award instead of Slaughter.
Sixth Man of the Year – (10.0ppg, 4.8rpg. 2.3 apg)
Tampus has been an exciting player to watch this year. He never failed in electrifying the crowd with his daredevil drives. He is slowly shaping up to be DLSU’s go-to-guy of the future (considering Revilla’s game has gone down drastically). Tampus just needs more consistency.