Header Ads Widget

Justine Baltazar named MPBL MVP

Justine Baltazar takes a photo together with his family and MPBL president Manny Pacquiao after winning the MVP award. MPBL
By Ivan Saldajeno

SAN FERNANDO, Pampanga—As virtually everyone in the MPBL community presumed, Justine Baltazar was named the regular season MVP for the 2023 season.

The six-foot-nine Pampanga big man was formally awarded the league's top individual award during the awarding rites on Tuesday night prior to Game 2 of the MPBL National Finals at the Bren Z. Guiao Convention Center here.

The fact that Baltazar received the MVP award in front of his fellow Kapampangan at home made it even sweeter.

Through 34 games up to Game 1 of the finals, Baltazar averaged 17.4 points on 54.8 percent shooting, 16.9 rebounds, 4.6 assists, 1.2 blocks, and 1.5 steals a night.

Baltazar headlines the All-MPBL First Team that also consists of Bacoor City's Jhan Nermal, Nueva Ecija's Will McAloney, Zamboanga's Jaycee Marcelino, the 2022 MVP, and San Juan's Orlan Wamar.

Nermal's breakout season helped pave the way for the Strikers to join the Giant Lanterns in the national finals and earned him the Most Improved Player award as well.

The other Bacoor City star, James Kwekuteye, led the All-MPBL Second Team also consisting of Makati's Robby Celiz, Batangas City's Jeckster Apinan, Pampanga's Archie Concepcion, and Pasig City's Ryan Costelo.

Standout Knight Adrian Nocum was awarded the Rookie of the Year hours after he signed a two-year deal with the Rain Or Shine Elasto Painters in the PBA.

Pasig's Jason Ballesteros was named the Defensive Player of the Year, Nueva Ecija's Jay-R Taganas was given the Sportsmanship Award, GenSan's Chris Masaglang was named the Homegrown Player of the Year, and Imus high-flyer Poypoy Actub was named the Impact Player of the Year.

Bataan Risers team owner Goody Ilagan was named the Executive of the Year. 

Follow him on X: @IvanSaldajeno

Post a Comment