MANILA, Philippines – A rejuvenated James Yap is the first player to earn PBA Player of the Week honors in the 2017 Commissioner's Cup after he helped tow the Rain or Shine Elasto Painters to back-to-back victories.
The break between conferences clearly helped Yap with his conditioning, and the former league MVP flashed his vintage form against NLEX and Mahindra.
Yap opened the midseason conference with averages of 19.0 points and 3.0 rebounds, beating Meralco's young backcourt of Baser Amer and Chris Newsome for the weekly citation.
The 35-year-old Yap scored 26 points, his highest output in three years, in Rain or Shine's conference debut to take a 113-105 victory over NLEX.
He connected on five triples against the Road Warriors, including a step-back three-pointer off Bradwyn Guinto to cap the victory.
Two days later, Yap came off the bench to score 12 points as Rain or Shine downed Mahindra in overtime, 99-95.
"I felt last conference, his knee wasn't that good," said Rain or Shine coach Caloy Garcia of Yap. "Pero noong offseason, medyo maganda ang takbo niya sa practice."
[During the offseason, he was running well in practice.]
"He comes early, shoots the ball, nagda-dunk pa sa practice to show he's healthy," he added.
The defending champions Rain or Shine will now take a week-long break before returning to action on Sunday against Blackwater at the Ynares Center in Antipolo.
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