PBA Best of the Week - March 19-24, 2014

This is the second post in what I hope will be a regular series about the best performers for every week in the PBA. Unlike the NBA, our local pro circuit doesn’t really have any citations for Player of the Week and other similar accolades, so this is something that I hope will satiate fans who want their hardcourt heroes duly recognized.

Once again, this past week saw a lot of very impressive performances. Two teams, in particular, stood out. Both San Miguel Beer and Talk N Text went unscathed this past week, with the former going 3-0 and the latter winning both its assignments. In this post, we will be rewarding their efforts by citing many players from these teams. 

Without further ado, here are Hoop Nut’s picks for the best PBA players of the past week:

A rookie, the reigning MVP, and a replacement import comprise
the best of the past week in the PBA.
(composite image by Enzo Flojo/Hoop Nut)

Import of the Week:
Kevin Jones (SMB) - 30.3ppg, 17.3rpg, 3.0apg, 1.0spg, 1.0bpg, 2.0 triples per game, .400 3pt%, .500 FG%, 63.6 EFF
- I don’t think anybody is still missing Josh Boone. Well, at least not after Jones led the Beermen to three straight wins this past week. Sure, the last two were against supremely inferior clubs, but wins are still wins no matter at whose expense, right? And, more importantly, in all three games, Jones was pretty awesome. He scored, rebounded, got his teammates involved, stole the ball, blocked shots, and nailed threes. He, literally, did everything one would expect from a former NBA player.

Richard Howell (TNT) - 16.0ppg, 22.5rpg, 1.0bpg, 48.3 EFF
- Howell isn’t the most explosive scorer or versatile offensive operator in the league’s current array of imports, but he might as well be the best rebounder and the most complementary interior presence the Tropang Texters can ask for. He just fills all of TNT’s needs at the slot without having to compromise the team’s offensive chemistry. And, hey, one cannot argue against a 6-0 record.

Kevin Jones has seemed to have settled into a nice groove for San Miguel.
(image by Paul Ryan Tan/Sports 5)

Rookie of the Week:
Ian Sangalang (SMC) - 9 points, 6 rebounds, .500 FG%, 25.0 EFF
- Sangalang didn’t score in double-figures for SMC, but he didn’t have to as they romped all over the Elasto-Painters a few nights ago. The former Golden Stag is just the epitome of a guy who works and works and just shrugs the accompanying fanfare. This early, it’s pretty clear that the #2 overall pick in 2013 will have a long and fruitful career ahead of him.

Raymond Almazan (ROS) - 6.5ppg, 5.0rpg, .714 FG%, 24.9 EFF
Before you scoff at the #3 overall pick’s numbers this past week, remember that he played a total of just 28 minutes in 2 games. After crunching some numbers, his current stats mean that Amazan’s per 48 minutes average would balloon to 22.3ppg and 17.1rpg. Ridiculous enough for you?

Ian Sangalang continues his strong play for the Mixers this conference.
(image by Paolo Papa/Sports 5)

Player of the Week:
Arwind Santos (SMB) - 17.7ppg, 9.3rpg, 2.7apg, 2.3 triples per game, .500 3pt%, .529 FG%, .833 FT%, 40.7 EFF
- What is the most eye-popping stat in the reigning MVP’s line? How about shooting 50% from rainbow country and making more than 2 triples per game this past week? The Spiderman has just been on a tear since the season started, playing like the league’s Most Valuable Player post facto. The former UAAP MVP is norming a near-double-double in the conference where one would expect imports to dominate both scoring and rebounding. And, again, the Beermen have reaped the benefits, going up to 5-1 right behind TNT and SMC.

Ranidel De Ocampo (TNT) - 21.5ppg, 3.0rpg, 1.5apg, 3.0 triples per game, .600 3pt%, .629 FG%, 38.6 EFF
- When Ranidel De Ocampo is in RaniDirk mode, hardly anybody in the PBA can stop him. Against Meralco and Ginebra, RDO exploded from long range, hitting a combined 6 treys and dropping 43 points last week. In short, he was dead on-target, which, as is usually the case, translated to big Ws for coach Norman Black’s Tropang Texters.

Arwind Santos does not let up as he tries to steal the ball from Barako Bull's Jeric Fortuna.
(image by Paolo Papa/Sports 5)

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