The Top Five PBA Point Guards Right Now (May 18, 2014)

With two-thirds of the 2013-2014 PBA season in the books, it’s time, once again, to take stock of our idols and see which ones have risen to the top like good cream and which ones have sunk to the bottom like diabetes-inducing syrup. Two great playmakers made the headlines in the recently-concluded PBA Commish Cup Finals, with Jayson Castro and the Texters falling short and Mark Barroca’s Mixers copping their third straight conference title. They’re both part of this list, but you’ll probably be a little surprised to see who the others are.

Without further ado, here they are – the top five point guards in the 2013-2014 PBA season as of the morning of May 18, 2014 (as always, this is based on the Player Efficiency ratings as calculated by

Here are the five best playmakers in the PBA as we enter the third conference.

5. Sol Mercado (SMB) - 14.4ppg, 3.2rpg, 4.2apg, 28.2 EFF
- Sure, Mercado and the rest of the Beermen would rather forget their getting eliminated in the quarterfinals of the Commissioner’s Cup, but one cannot deny that the Sol-Train is still one of the most dangerous PGs in the land. His numbers took a dip when he moved to SMB from the Batang Pier, but, along with best friend Chris Ross, Mercado should still lead what is maybe the deepest backcourt in the entire league.

4. LA Tenorio (GIN) - 11.6ppg, 4.5rpg, 6.1apg, 1.3spg, 1.2 triples per game, .809 FT%, 28.9 EFF
- Many have lamented how the Gin Kings went from title contender in the Philippine Cup to laughingstock just one conference later, and much of the blame has been put on Tenorio, who didn’t ever seem to find a good rhythm in Ginebra’s ten Commish Cup games. There are some whispers that his value will go down with the entry of Jeffrey Cariaso as head coach and the expected implementation of the triangle offense, but, at least if we’re going to use the San Mig Super Coffee Mixers as basis, the PG spot will still be a critical part of Ginebra’s system. And that means there will still be a ton of pressure on the Lieutenant to produce.

3. Mark Barroca (SMC) - 11.7ppg, 4.0rpg, 3.7apg, 1.7spg, 28.9 EFF
- Barroca’s production in the Commish Cup wasn’t as stellar as it was in the Philippine Cup, and he had to adjust to coming off the bench to spell combo guard PJ Simon, but it all still worked out pretty well as the Coffee Prince came up big when things got testy for SMC. Together with rookie spitfire Justin Melton, Barroca led an energetic second unit that held the fort for San Mig and, at times, even sparked their comebacks. It’s a pity Barroca isn’t part of the Gilas Pilipinas pool, but whoever is at fault for that is an entirely different conversation for an entirely different time.

Mark Barroca made a huge difference coming off the bench for SMC in the Commish Cup Finals.

2. Alex Cabagnot (GLO) - 11.8ppg, 4.2rpg, 5.9apg, 1.0spg, 1.5 triples per game, 29.1 EFF
- Wait. Stop. Don’t shoot me. Yes, Cabagnot has hardly been headline material this season, but, honestly, despite being traded to maybe the worst-performing team in the league, you still have to give props to Cabaggie for giving his darned best every single outing. This is a guy who went from starting playmaker in one of the league’s best teams to starting playmaker for the cellar-dwelling Batang Pier. And, well, he is the de facto mentor to Terrence Romeo to boot. Which one is the tougher thing to do – calling plays for GlobalPort or mentoring the volatile former King Tamaraw? Your guess is as good as mine, but I’m giving additional props to Cabagnot just for trying.

Alex Cabagnot tries his signature lefty jumper against Barako Bull.

1. Jayson Castro (TNT) - 17.0ppg, 4.2rpg, 4.5apg, 1.6 triples per game, .380 3pt%, 34.1 EFF
- It is a gross understatement to say that Castro’s failing to lead TNT to the Commissioner’s Cup crown after going 13-0 prior to the Finals was a disappointment. To say that he choked when he underwhelmed in the series-ending Game 4 is an even more demeaning prospect, but the fact is Asia’s #1 point guard just couldn’t get it done by himself. Heck, he was even outplayed by Barroca in some stretches. Mano-a-mano, he’s still the best in my book, but this most recent fall from grace just reveals that there really is a lot more the Blur can work on. I’m sure that in future conferences he’ll gladly trade any Best Player of the Conference hardware for a conference title.

Jayson Castro and the rest of the Tropang Texters will have go
return to the drawing board after losing the in the Commish Cup Finals.

Outside looking in:
JV Casio (ALA) - 27.1 EFF
Paul Lee (ROS) - 26.9 EFF
Denok Miranda (BAR) - 24.7 EFF

Images are by Paul Ryan Tan and Paolo Papa/Sports 5.

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3 Comment

Paul Lee over any of those guys (except Castro) any day. And asan si Jimmy?!


Agree with this! Asan si Paul Lee and Jimmy?!


Sir Enzo based this off statistics (their EFF) which pretty much explains why Cabagnot is above Barroca.