PBA: Abueva considers lead in BPC race a 'bonus'

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 19) – Magnolia Pambansang Manok Hotshots ace bruiser Calvin Abueva is elated to find out that he's leading the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup Best Player of the Conference (BPC) race.

"I did not notice that I'm leading the stats race," said the 6-foot-3 cager from Angeles City, Pampanga during the pre-PBA Finals virtual media conference on Tuesday.

READ: Desire to end title drought fuels Magnolia-TNT finals showdown

The Magnolia forward made an impression in his debut with the multi-titled franchise after finishing with 34.2 statistical points due to his averages of 15.2 points, 10.0 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 1.0 steals, and 1.1 blocks.

Abeuva added he considers the possibility of winning the BPC plum as a bonus, but his eyes are still set on one goal.

"The number one goal that I must achieve is to advance to the finals and to win the trophy," he said.

Magnolia big man Ian Sangalang is also in the running to win the BPC award as he occupies the third spot with 33.0 statistical points from his per game averages of 16.7 points, 8.8 rebounds, and 1.4 assists.

"I went to the bubble not expecting to be a candidate to win the BPC, but to help my team return to the finals," said Sangalang, who is Abueva's partner since their college days in San Sebastian.

TNT rookie swingman Mikey Williams ranks fourth in the BPC race with 32.0 statistical points after averaging 16.7 points, 8.8 rebounds, and 1.4 assists.

"I came in, tried to fit in, and do what I can to do to help the team. I'm glad we are in a position to compete for the championship, that is completely our end goal," said Williams.

NorthPort Batang Pier guard Robert Bolick and six-time PBA Most Valuable Player June Mar Fajardo of the San Miguel Beermen completed the top five of the BPC race.

Second placer Bolick, whose team got swept in the quarterfinals by San Miguel, finished with 33.7 statistical points. Fajardo sits at fifth place with 31.8 statistical points after losing in seven games in the semifinals against TNT.