CJ Perez barely beats Juami Tiongson for PBA '23 top scorer award

CJ Perez is the top scorer of the past PBA season. Dennis Acosta (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA—Only a small fraction of a point decided the top scorer for the 2023 PBA season as CJ Perez prevailed over Juami Tiongson in the said race.

As distributed by the league's chief statistician Fidel Mangonon to media outlets on Sunday, Perez took flight as San Miguel's new top offensive option and topped the season's scoring race with 18.75 points per game in 59 total outings.

Tiongson, on the other hand, showed that he deserved to be the 2022 Most Improved Player as he finished second in scoring with 18.7 points per game in 30 matches that he played for Terrafirma.

NorthPort's Robert Bolick finished third with 18.5 ppg followed by the TNT duo of Mikey Williams (fourth with 18.4), and RR Pogoy (fifth with 18.3).

Perez's fellow Beerman June Mar Fajardo is once again the PBA's king of the boards as he finished the season with an average of 13.5 rebounds per game.

The 6-foot-10 behemoth is actually the only player who averaged in double figures rebounds-wise as the second placer, NLEX's Sean Anthony, only had 9.4 per game.

Blackwater's Ato Ular showed that he too can hustle for the board despite being a rookie as he finished third with 9.1 rebounds a night, which could be used as consideration in his Rookie of the Year bid.

Fajardo is sixth in scoring with 17.7 points a game, and his double-double averages in 46 games played could give him a narrative for him to take back the Most Valuable Player award.

Scottie Thompson, the reigning MVP, led the league in assists with six dimes per game even as he also averaged 13.9 points and 7.7 rebounds (fifth in the league) a night, providing everyone a reason why he should still be the league's top player overall.

Matthew Wright, despite only playing 10 games for Phoenix in the PBA Philippine Cup before joining Kyoto in the B.League, still finished second in dimes with 5.9 a night.

Magnolia's Jio Jalalon led the steals department with 2.1 interceptions a game, while Ginebra's Japeth Aguilar is the league's top rim protector for the 2023 season with 1.53 blocks a game, barely edging NLEX's Brandon Rosser, who finished with 1.47.

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