Focused on defense, Ginebra’s Christian Standhardinger surprised by PBA Finals MVP award
BOCAUE — Tabbing the Finals Most Valuable Player Award was the farthest thing from Christian Standhardinger’s mind.
The dynamic forward, after all, was focusing on the intangibles throughout the Commissioner’s Cup championship series.
“I don’t know if you guys saw me. I was just sitting there on the chair. I started cramping up in the fourth and just enjoyed the ride and then I heard my name,” Standhardinger told reporters in the din of the revelries following a 114-99 Game 7 win over Bay Area at Philippine Arena here.
“I told a lot of people. (Andrew) Nicholson was a handful, right? So I just focused on [him],” he went on. “I didn’t focus on offense, that’s why this is so surprising.”
Standhardinger was adjudged the PBA Press Corps’ finest throughout the best-of-seven race after averaging 10.9 points, 7.0 rebounds, 2.7 assists, and 1.1 steals.
Before a mammoth record crowd of 54,589, the 33-year-old Filipino German finished with 12 points, 10 rebounds and six assists to help the club to its 15th title in the PBA.
“I just have this to say: This goes out to my teammates—the way that they passed me the ball. I was trying to focus on defense in this Finals, that’s why I am very, very surprised in getting the [award],” said Standhardinger, the 2017 top draft pick who has now blossomed into a four-time PBA champion.
“I appreciate everybody who voted for me. I’m just happy we won the championship, and [this is] an honor,” he went on.
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