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One-year absence in UAAP now makes sense for three-time Finals MVP Thirdy Ravena

by Niel Victor Masoy, November 20, 2019 9:45pm

Thirdy Ravena started his collegiate career in unceremonious of ways.

As a rookie in the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) season 77 (2014) Men’s basketball tournament, Ravena just played spot minutes for the Ateneo de Manila University Blue Eagles.

Then, the 6-foot-2 high-flying forward just averaged 1.4 points and 1.5 rebounds in 6.7 minutes of action on the hard court.

Ravena was supposed to bounce back in 2015 but academic issues stopped him to sit out season 78. 

Frustration creeped all over the then 18-year-old Ravena, and he was left questioning why such a debacle happened to him.

“During that time, ‘di ko maisip kung bakit nangyari sa’kin yun. Bakit sobrang unfair,” recalled Ravena.

But hitting that ‘lowest point, that ‘rock bottom’ was exactly what Ravena needed to grow. Before he was whining about it, but now, he’s grateful that it happened to him.

After all, if it wasn’t for that, Ravena would not be the three-time champion, the three-time Finals MVP that he is today - the first three-time Finals MVP in the history of UAAP basketball. 

“In the long run, ‘di ko ma-express yung gratitude ko na nangyari yung sakin. Nagka-wake up call ako.”

“Honestly, it really is a testament that God has his plans eh,” said Ravena, who notched his third straight Finals MVP Wednesday after the Blue Eagles won the season 82 title at the expense of the University of Santo Tomas Growling Tigers.

For this year’s Finals, the graduating Ravena put up 24.5 points, 6.0 rebounds, and 4.0 assists.

Of course, Ravena would also not be the prolific player that he is today if it wasn’t for the guidance of Ateneo head coach Tab Baldwin.

“With coach Tab, he’s done a lot for me and for my career. Not just inside the court but off the court as well. I am just really happy that I’ve got to spend one more year with him,” uttered Ravena. 

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