PBA: 7 years on, Kerby Raymundo reacts to doubts over ‘40 Greatest’ inclusion

Rey Joble

Posted at Jan 14 2022 09:46 AM

Several times in his stellar PBA career, retired big man Kerby Raymundo felt he was deprived of individual awards that would somehow complete himself more as one of the league’s greatest players.

A 4-time PBA champion, 10-time PBA All-Star and a former finals most valuable player, Raymundo did end up on the 40 Greatest list.

His inclusion turned out to be both memorable — and questionable — but Raymundo dealt with it and accepted the award amid the reception. 

"My inclusion in the PBA's 40 Greatest, it's memorable, but I've also heard it's questionable," said Raymundo, who was not in the country when the list came out.

He was one of the non-MVP winners to be included along with then Gilas Pilipinas stalwarts Marc Pingris and Jayson Castro, and retired former Ginebra stars Chito Loyzaga and Marlou Aquino.

Multiple MVP winners such as Danny Ildefonso, James Yap and Willie Miller and former MVPs Asi Taulava, Eric Menk, Kelly Williams, Jayjay Helterbrand, Mark Caguioa, Jimmy Alapag and Arwind Santos were considered automatic inclusions in the list.

But the selection raised more eyebrows from basketball purists as several other players who were left out as early as the 25 greatest list were even excluded in the latest selection.

Those players fans believed Nelson Asaytono, the late Arnie Tuadles and Abe King of Toyota, former Crispa star Yoyoy Villamin, Bong Hawkins, a key member of Alaska's grand slam team in 1996, and former San Miguel Beer star Danny Seigle among others, should have have been include.

"Actually, I’m in the US nu’ng time na lumabas yun (40 Greatest). Nagbabakasyon kami ng wife ko," Raymundo said.

He has high respect for Asaytono's game and although they didn't play together with Red Bull as "The Kid" transferred to Purefoods when "The Bull" went back to play for the Photokina-owned franchise in 2002, the former Letran star emulated the pride of Mindoro. 

"Ako, I really admire si kuya Nelson (Asaytono)," Raymundo said. "Kaya lang ako naman, babalik pa rin ako doon sa part na ako rin naman, dapat nag-MVP season rin naman ako. Dapat rin nanalo ako ng best player of the conference. Pero talagang ganu’n eh. If it's your time, it's your time. If it's not, it's not.

"So ini-enjoy ko na lang ’yung bakasyon ko sa America nu’ng time na ’yun. Sinabi ko na lang sa wife ko na huwag na siyang magbasa ng Twitter. Mag-thank you tayo sa lahat nang bumoto. Kumbaga, they appreciated what I did doon sa career ko, kung ano ’yung nagawa ko sa career ko."