MANILA, Philippines – The race for the Best Import of the Conference award is as close as it could get with Justin Brownlee holding a slim lead over Terrence Jones through the quarterfinals of the PBA Commissioner's Cup.
Brownlee, the reigning Best Import of the mid-season joust, led the statistical points (SPs) race with 61.8 behind his averages of a league-best 34.2 points, 13.5 rebounds, 5.7 assists, 2.6 steals, and 1.9 blocks for Barangay Ginebra.
Jones, meanwhile, wasn't far behind with 60.2 SPs with per game counts of 32.8 points, 15.8 rebounds, a league-high 7.5 assists, 2.9 blocks, and 1.3 steals for TNT.
And as fate would have it, the two contenders are also going head-to-head in the semifinals as Ginebra and TNT clash in a best-of-five in what could be the series that would determine the winner for the coveted plum.
Jones had the last laugh in Game 1 with TNT escaping Ginebra thanks to his 24 points, 12 rebounds, 4 blocks, and 3 steals, but Brownlee was just as stellar with a near triple-double of 23 points, 15 rebounds, 9 assists, and 5 steals.
San Miguel's Chris McCullough (53.8 SPs), Columbian's Lester Prosper (52.7), and Alaska's Diamon Simpson (50.5) round out the top 5.
The next 5 imports are NLEX's Olu Ashaolu (48.3), Meralco's Delroy James (45.0), Blackwater's Greg Smith (44.3), Phoenix's Richard Howell (44.0), and NorthPort's Prince Ibeh (39.9)
Rain or Shine's Carl Montgomery (39.6), and Magnolia's Rakeem Christmas (26.3) complete the import rankings.
In the Best Player of the Conference duel, top rookies Ray Parks and CJ Perez emerged as the leaders in statistics. (READ: Rookies Parks, Perez lead pack in Best Player race) – Rappler.com
Delfin Dioquino dreamt of being a PBA player, but he did not have the skills to make it. So he pursued the next best thing to being an athlete – to write about them. He took up journalism at the University of Santo Tomas and joined Rappler as soon as he graduated in 2017.