The Top 10 Players of the 2015 PBA Commissioner’s Cup

The huge imports shook up the power structure and dominated in the Commish Cup, but that doesn’t mean the locals all shrunk into anonymity. On the contrary, many locals stepped up in the second conference. I mean, Greg Slaughter seems to be blossoming, Brian Heruela and Stanley Pringle have been great rookies, Jayson Castro and Paul Lee are tearing it up, and Gary David is turning back the clock. Who ranks among the top ten this conference? Let’s see. 

Without further ado, here they are – the top ten players of the 2015 PBA Commissioner’s Cup:

*This is based on simple Player Efficiency ratings as calculated by me — [(Pts + Rebs + Asts + Stls + Blks) - (FTM + FGM + TOs)]/ Games Played. The stats are only from the elimination round.

10. Brian Heruela (BLA) - 11.5ppg, 5.0rpg, 4.9apg, 1.6spg, 44.9 FG%, 14.4 EFF
- Brian Heruela is a hella player. Great upper body strength, nice shooting touch, and good court vision. Just has a strong skill-set to be an effective long-term PBA PG. Blackwater has its first solid building block for the future. If Douthit stays healthy in the next conference (assuming they get him again) and the Elite get a quality Asian import, they can go far with Heruela as their best local.

9. Terrence Romeo (GLO) - 20.8ppg, 4.5rpg, 3.0apg, 2.3 triples per game, 34.7 3pt%, 40.7 FG%, 15.0 EFF
- Romeo is morphing into a nouveau Marc Caguioa, which either makes him a bad fit for a lukewarm franchise like GlobalPort or makes him the perfect guy to make the franchise palatable in the near future. He’s a boom-bust guy on any given night, but he’s also crazy entertaining.

8. Stanley Pringle (GLO) - 11.9ppg, 6.8rpg, 3.1apg, 1.0spg, 49.4 FG%, 15.4 EFF
- Pringle looks to have slowed down after a whirlwind first conference, but he is still the rookie with the best body of work out there. Also, as good as Heruela is, Pringle still has more upside, and he should be a shoo-in All-Star for the next handful of seasons. Ginebra fans are already pining for him to actually make the rumored jump, but until that day actually comes, all they can do is wait with bated breath.

7. Marc Pingris (PUR) - 8.5ppg, 8.2rpg, 3.0apg, 56.5 FG%, 15.5 EFF
- Ping is the only guy on this list who doesn’t score in double-figures, but that’s fine since he rebounds with the best of ‘em and makes plays for his teammates. He’s also extremely efficient on the offensive end, making nearly 57% of his field goals. Ping has always been the perfect glue-guy on the frontline, and as long as he doesn’t try to do too much, he should remain one of the country’s best PFs.

6. Ranidel De Ocampo (TNT) - 14.4ppg, 6.3rpg, 1.7apg, 1.1spg, 2.1 triples per game, 37.7 3pt%, 48.4 FG%, 15.5 EFF
- Speaking of one of the country’s best PFs, we have RDO here at the sixth spot. There are very few locals who can score inside, stretch the floor, and rebound like crazy (Arwind Santos and Beau Belga are up there and, at one point, so was Jay Washington), but I don’t think anybody does as well as Ranidel. The Cavite-native is just so effective. Sometimes it really is as simple as that.

5. Asi Taulava (NLX) - 10.0ppg, 9.9rpg, 1.9apg, 45.5 FG%, 15.6 EFF
- The guy whose Gatorade is spiked with the elixir of immortality. Asi just doesn’t quit and his production remains among the top tier in the league. Yes, he’s not as efficient as he once was in scoring, but he more than makes up for that deficiency with his superb rebounding and solid post defense. At 42, he is still one of the most intimidating behemoths out there.

4. Jayson Castro (TNT) - 17.1ppg, 4.6rpg, 4.6apg, 2.6 triples per game, 44.6 3pt%, 42.4 FG%, 15.8 EFF
- Castro has been so impressive that some of his stat-lines rival some of the imports’. He is still perhaps the most dangerous slasher in the country, and his outside shooting continues to improve. Translation? He just becomes tougher and tougher to guard as each conference passes by.

3. Paul Lee (ROS) - 16.6ppg, 6.7rpg, 3.0apg, 2.7 triples per game, 40.3 3pt%, 39.5 FG%, 93.2 FT%, 17.2 EFF
- Lee has had a few “Whoa, boy” lines this conference (Back-to-back 25-point games? 18 and 11 against Ginebra?), which earns him my hypothetical vote for BPC (provided they reach the Finals, of course). He scores in bunches, rebounds like hell for a guard, is a top-level playmaker, and is just all around efficient (93% from the line?!). Now about that shot selection…

2. Greg Slaughter (GIN) - 16.2ppg, 9.6rpg, 1.9apg, 51.9 FG%, 18.9 EFF
- Is he the best local center right now? Not yet, but he’s closing the gap and fast against June Mar. Greg has shown a lot more aggression and efficiency this conference. His production underscores his focus on his mission — to give Ginebra its due. His recent frustrations have been bared to the public, and that means we shouldn’t be surprised if he records even more eye-popping numbers in the third conference.

1. June Mar Fajardo (SMB) - 16.5ppg, 12.6rpg, 1.4apg, 1.9bpg, 53.0 FG%, 23.2 EFF
- Fajardo is still the country’s most consistent double-double machine. He does really well at both ends of the floor and, at times, seems even better than some imports. He continues as the best slotman of the league, but he is also one injury away from losing that spot to Gregzilla. Also, the momentum of their title run in the first conference has all but gone up in smoke after missing the quarterfinal bus in this conference. June Mar needs to rediscover how to be a winner again.

Honorable Mentions:
LA Tenorio (GIN) - 10.7ppg, 3.5rpg, 4.4apg, 2.2spg, 1.3 triples per game, 34.1 3pt%, 41.5 FG%, 13.0 EFF
LA Revilla (KIA) - 9.4ppg, 4.3rpg, 4.7apg, 2.0spg, 40.4 FG%, 12.8 EFF
JC Intal (BAR) - 13.4ppg, 4.7rpg, 2.4apg, 1.0spg, 1.4 triples per game, 39.3 FG%, 11.4 EFF
Mark Barroca (PUR) - 11.5ppg, 4.5rpg, 2.3apg, 1.3spg, 31.3 3pt%, 45.8 FG%, 11.3 EFF
Gary David (MER) - 17.9ppg, 2.0rpg, 1.2apg, 2.0 triples per game, 42.3 3pt%, 43.6 FG%, 11.2 EFF

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