Kiefer Ravena on MVP Award: 'It's special but I'd rather play in Finals'
MANILA, Philippines - Kiefer Ravena of the Ateneo Blue Eagles won his first ever Most Valuable Player award but says he'd easily trade that for playing time in the Finals.
Ravena formally received the UAAP Season 77 MVP plum for the men's division on Wednesday, October 8 just before Game 2 of the men's basketball Finals between Far Eastern University and National University at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
Despite compiling individual accolades since joining Ateneo as an Eaglet - including multiple championships and Mythical 5 awards among others - this MVP was a first for the 20-year old.
As sweet an award at this is, he’d rather be suiting up for the UAAP Championship series.
Oo (Yes), most definitely. Hindi ako magdadalawang isip to trade my MVP for a championship," he remarked without a hint of doubt. (I won't think twice to trade my MVP for a championship.)
"It's special being it's my first MVP but I'd rather play in the Finals," added the 2011 Rookie of the Year. "But it's worth having. Baka ma-misinterpret ako na ayoko manalo ng MVP. But who doesn't wanna play in the Finals of the UAAP?" (I might be misinterpreted that I don't want to win the MVP.)
"Kaya nga siguro nalalayo sa akin yung MVP awards kasi gusto ko talaga manalo yung team." (That's also probably why I never get MVP awards because I really want the team to win.)
Ravena garnered a total of 77.64 statistical points and normed 21.2 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 5.6 assists during the eliminations. His team finished at the top of the standings with an 11-3 record but missed the Finals despite holding a twice-to-beat edge as they lost to National University in the Final Four.
(IN PHOTOS: Ravena, Tolentino, Rosario grab top UAAP awards)
"It's a different feeling pag naglaro ka sa Finals eh. Consolation na lang 'to as this is not our goal. But any consolation is better than nothing," said the 6-foot guard who has won two titles with the Blue Eagles in 2011 and 2012.
"Blessing pa rin siya binigay sa akin. Dine-dedicate ko 'to sa teammates ko kasi hindi ko naman 'to makuha kung hindi dahil sa kanila. This award is a symbolism of each and every one of us working hard."
(It's a different feeling playing in the Finals. This is consolation for me as this is not our goal. It's still a blessing for me. I dedicate this to my teammates because I would never get this if not for them.)
The consolation prizes rained heavily on Ravena as he took home 5 other special awards which amounted to Php 280,000.
Ravena is also part of this season's Mythical 5 together with Chris Newsome (Ateneo), Mac Belo (FEU), Jeron Teng (DLSU), and Karim Abdul (UST).
On the other hand, NU's Troy Rosario was adjudged Most Improved Player this season. While Ateneo's Arvin Tolentino won Rookie of the Year honors.
Meanwhile, in the women's division where National University reigned supreme and swept the entire Season 77 for their first ever title, Lady Bulldog Afril Bernardino received the MVP plum.
She, along with Danica Therese Jose (Ateneo), Lore Rivera (UST), Shelley Gupilan (NU), and Gemma Miranda (NU) make up the women's Mythical 5.
NU's Ria Nabalan was named Rookie of the Year.
Below is the full list of special awards and winners for the men's division:
Biogesic Fast Fizz Players of the Season: Kiefer Ravena and Jeron Teng
Jollibee Champ of the Season: Kiefer Ravena
Master Game Face Player of the Season: Kiefer Ravena
KFC Double Double Deliver of the Season: Karim Abdul and Charles Mammie
Avida Hit It Home Shoot For Your School: Far Eastern University
RCBC Savings Bank Life-Changing Player of the Season: Kiefer Ravena
PS Bankable Player of the season: Kiefer Ravena