Magnolia is reaping the fruits of its off-season gamble for Calvin Abueva as the 2013 PBA Rookie of the Year emerged as the PBA’s Player of the Week.
The Hotshots acquired “The Beast” last February 17 from Phoenix Super LPG in exchange for veteran guard Chris Banchero and so far, the 7-time PBA All-Star has proven to be a formidable acquisition for the 2014 PBA Grand Slam champs as they advanced to their first semifinals appearance since the 2019 edition of the All-Filipino Conference.
Abueva’s superb performance propelled him as the hands-down choice for the Cignal Play-PBA Press Corps’ Player of the Week from Sept. 29 to Oct. 3.
During that stretch, the 6-foot-3 forward out of San Sebastian averaged 16.5 points and 13.0 rebounds on 52% shooting from the field.
The 33-year-old Pampangueño posted an eye-popping double-double of 20 points and 19 rebounds in the 14-time PBA champs’ 96-86 closeout win vs. Rain or Shine in Game 2 of the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup Quarterfinals.
A couple of days later, the frontrunner for Best Player of the Conference provided a late spark in the fourth quarter to help the 2018 PBA Governors’ Cup champions secure a 88-79 triumph over the Meralco Bolts in the semis opener.
“Calvin adds toughness. Yung sistema kasi namin bagay na bagay sa kanya. That’s why nung nakuha namin siya, hindi siya nahirapang mag-adjust. Yun kasi ang laro niya,” said Magnolia coach Chito Victolero.
Aside from the 2nd overall pick of the 2012 PBA Draft, other players considered for the weekly honor were Magnolia teammates Paul Lee and Ian Sangalang, as well as the TNT trio of Roger Pogoy, Troy Rosario and Jayson Castro