By Michael Angelo S. Murillo
THE Annual PBA Press Corps Awards Night which was set to take place today has been moved to a later date in accordance with the guidelines set by the government as the National Capital Region went under “community quarantine” on Sunday to help mitigate the spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
Was set to take place at the Novotel Manila in Araneta City, the awards night, held annually by the media covering the league, was forced to reschedule the event as under community quarantine guidelines mass gatherings are strictly prohibited.
Eleven awards were set to be handed out, including the Order of Merit to be given to San Miguel Beermen big man June Mar Fajardo.
Mr. Fajardo recently claimed his sixth straight PBA most valuable player award at the league’s annual awards.
The San Miguel player, who unfortunately is expected to miss a significant time this season after injuring his leg and undergoing surgery in the offseason, is given the award after garnering the most number of Player of the Week honors last season, that saw his team win two of three titles – Philippine Cup and Commissioner’s Cup.
Also set to be feted is Columbian Dyip star CJ Perez, who is the Scoring Champion after leading the PBA with a 20.8 point per contest average in his rookie year.
To be awarded as well is the All-Interview Team, which is given to personalities who produce quotable quotes and at the same time always make themselves available for interviews.
Making up the team are Kiefer Ravena (NLEX), Beau Belga (Rain or Shine), Vic Manuel (Alaska), Arwind Santos (San Miguel), Christian Standhardinger (Northport) and coach Yeng Guiao (NLEX).
The Virgilio “Baby” Dalupan Coach of the Year award, meanwhile, is a toss-up between San Miguel Beer’s Leo Austria and Tim Cone of Barangay Ginebra.
Other awards to be given are the Game of the Season, All-Rookie Team, Mr. Quality Minutes, Defensive Player of the Year, President’s award, and the Danny Floro Executive of the Year.
To be honored as well are the D-League Finals MVPs, namely, Cignal-Ateneo’s Thirdy Ravena (Aspirant’s Cup) and Hessed Gabo of BRT-Sumisip Basilan-St. Clare (Foundation Cup).
The PBA press corps said the awards night will still be held at Novotel when situation settles even as it extended its gratitude to the venue’s management for the flexibility given to the group.
The PBA Press Corps Awards Night is to be presented by Cignal TV.