UAAP Basketball

UP’s Diouf edges Ateneo’s Padrigao as UAAP Season 85 MVP

JR Isaga
UP’s Diouf edges Ateneo’s Padrigao as UAAP Season 85 MVP

TOP GUN. Malick Diouf averages a double-double for the UP Fighting Maroons.


UP center Malick Diouf overtakes Ateneo guard Forthsky Padrigao by a couple of statistical points to lead the season’s top performers

MANILA, Philippines – UP star center Malick Diouf is set to be awarded the UAAP Season 85 MVP after a close battle with controversial Ateneo guard Forthsky Padrigao, according to the official league stats released on Saturday, December 3.

The lanky 6-foot-10 anchor, who is also the reigning Finals MVP, amassed 73.857 statistical points (SPs) – the sole basis for the UAAP MVP award – against Padrigao’s 71.571.

The flashy Blue Eagle playmaker, however, will still likely join Diouf in the Mythical Five alongside UE’s one-and-done forward Luis Villegas (69.857), Ateneo veteran Dave Ildefonso (64.929), and UP’s Season 84 Mythical Five forward Carl Tamayo (63.429).

Season 84 MVP Ange Kouame (70.786) ranked third overall but will possibly be the odd man out due to a league rule only allowing one foreign student-athlete (FSA) in the Mythical Team. Despite Kouame being a naturalized Filipino, both the UAAP and Ateneo have agreed to keep him as an FSA.

Meanwhile, La Salle floor general Evan Nelle (68.091) will also likely be kept off the Mythical Five despite finishing fifth after being suspended earlier in the season – the same fate that befell Ateneo star Thirdy Ravena in 2018.

Another key piece of the Green Archers’ backcourt, Schonny Winston, will also miss the cut after taking a standings nosedive (62.1) due to only playing spot seconds with no recorded stats in his last three elimination games. The Fil-Am guard led the statistical rankings after the first round. 

La Salle, however, will find solace in star rookie Kevin Quiambao, who is set to win the season’s Rookie of the Year after tallying 56.615 SPs – cruising over the now-disqualified NU playmaker Kean Baclaan (51.0) and UE bruiser Gani Stevens (44.214).

All awards will be handed out before Game 2 of the UAAP Finals, tentatively scheduled on Monday, December 19. 

Diouf averaged a double-double of 10.79 points and 10.86 rebounds on top of 2.86 assists, 1.5 steals, and 1.5 blocks for the Maroons.

Padrigao led the league in steals at 2.36, tied with La Salle’s Mark Nonoy, aside from averaging 11.0 points, 4.36 rebounds, and 5.5 assists.

Villegas posted averages of 13.14 points, 8.07 rebounds, 3.79 assists, and 1.93 steals, while Ildefonso collected 12.07 points, 8.29 rebounds, 2.64 assists, and 1.14 steals.

Tamayo, the top rookie last season also named in the Mythical Five, impressed anew by norming 13.79 points, 7.71 rebounds, 1.5 assists, and 1.0 steal.

Latest rookie standout Quiambao averaged 11.23 points, 6.54 rebounds, 3.23 assists, and 1.09 steals.

Interestingly, UST players led the league in points and rebounds with Nic Cabanero firing 17.62 points and Adama Faye hauling down 12.23 rebounds.

But neither even crashed the top 10 as the Tigers won only one out of 14 elimination round games, thus weighing down their rankings. –

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