MANILA, Philippines -- San Miguel guard CJ Perez earned PBA Player of the Week honors after helping the Beermen take a step towards the semifinals of the 2021 PBA Philippine Cup.
In what is his first conference with San Miguel Beer, Perez has been serving as the team's quiet operator and stepping up as their backcourt has been affected by injuries to Terrence Romeo and Alex Cabagnot.
Perez averaged 17.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists, and 2.0 steals in San Miguel's last two wins, both of which ended in dramatic fashion, thanks to game-winners from Marcio Lassiter and Alex Cabagnot.
Thanks to his steady play, Perez earned Player of the Week honors for the period of September 22-26, bridging the tail-end of the elimination round and the start of the quarterfinals.
This is Perez's first time to play in the playoffs since he was drafted by the TerraFirma Dyip with the top overall pick in 2018. He became a two-time scoring champion with the Dyip before being acquired by San Miguel in a blockbuster trade in the offseason.
In the Beermen's 101-100 win over Alaska, Perez led San Miguel with 20 points, six rebounds, four steals and three assists -- including the extra pass to Lassiter for the game-winning three-pointer.
That win sealed San Miguel's spot in the upper bracket of the standings at No. 4, setting them up for a quarterfinal showdown with No. 5 NorthPort.
In Game 1 against the Batang Pier, Perez put up 14 points, six rebounds, and two assists before Cabagnot drilled the game-winner with 1.5 seconds to go to push San Miguel to the brink of the semifinals.
Perez beat out three teammates -- June Mar Fajardo, Mo Tautuaa, and Chris Ross -- as well as the Meralco quartet of Mac Belo, Alvin Pasaol, Allein Maliksi, and Bong Quinto for the weekly honor being handed out by the group regularly covering the PBA beat.
Also in consideration for the weekly award were: Magnolia's Ian Sangalang and Paul Lee, NorthPort's Robert Bolick, and Barangay Ginebra's Christian Standhardinger and Stanley Pringle.