June Mar Fajardo reclaims throne as PBA MVP

June Mar Fajardo is once again the PBA MVP. Kennelf Monteza
By Ivan Saldajeno

QUEZON CITY—June Mar Fajardo is back as the PBA's king.

The San Miguel center reclaimed the Most Valuable Player award, beating last year's MVP Scottie Thompson and two more finalists as announced during the Leo Awards on Sunday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.

Fajardo amassed a total of 2,248 points after combining the scores from the statistical points and the player and media votes.

Thompson ended up third in the MVP race with 1,539 points, just 20 behind Ginebra teammate Christian Standhardinger, who was second with 1,559.

CJ Perez finished fourth with 1,177 points.

Thompson still got the better of the player votes, but Fajardo, who was number one in the statistical points race, got the overwhelming lead in the media votes to seal his seventh MVP award overall.

The four MVP finalists, as anticipated, made up the Mythical First Team with Gin King Jamie Malonzo completing the Mythical Five.

The Mythical Second Team consisted of Robert Bolick, Mikey Williams, Calvin Oftana, Calvin Abueva, and Arvin Tolentino.

Converge's Justin Arana won the Rookie of the Year, while new Ginebra signing Maverick Ahanmisi won the Most Improved Player award.

Standhardinger, Fajardo, Cliff Hodge, Jio Jalalon, and Chris Newsome made up the All-Defensive Team, while Kevin Alas won the Samboy Lim Sportsmanship Award.

Follow him on X: @IvanSaldajeno