MANILA (UPDATED) - Meralco's Aaron Black capped a strong freshman campaign in the PBA by winning the league's Outstanding Rookie award.
Black was recognized during the PBA's virtual awards ceremony on Sunday night, as the league feted the players who shone in its bubble conference last year.
The PBA only held one tournament in 2020 -- the All-Filipino Cup -- due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
And Black was the rookie who shone brightest inside the bubble in Clark, Pampanga, becoming the lowest pick ever to win the trophy. The former Ateneo guard was selected 18th overall in the 2019 Rookie Draft by the Bolts, where he went on to play for his father, Norman Black.
"It definitely feels great," said Black, who showcased his toughness and skills in the PBA D-League and the MPBL after his UAAP career.
"This will push me to work even harder in the next conference," he added.
Black played 18 games for the Bolts, averaging 6.6 points, 3.7 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game. Meralco made a breakthrough playoff appearance in the All-Filipino Cup, making it to the semifinals before losing in five games to eventual champions Barangay Ginebra.
Black won the award over Terrafirma's Roosevelt Adams, Ginebra's Arvin Tolentino, Alaska's Barkley Ebona, and Magnolia's Aris Dionisio.