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Dominant game from June Mar Fajardo puts Beermen in record books

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Winning never stops for San Miguel Beermen (0:24)

The numbers behind the San Miguel Beermen's run of dominance. (0:24)

June Mar Fajardo was fiercely determined to propel the San Miguel Beermen to a historic fourth straight Philippine Cup title.

The big man poured in a playoff career-high of 42 points and 20 rebounds to help his team overcome a 23-point deficit and secure the championship.

Fajardo added more hardware to his growing collection as he earned the Finals Most Valuable Player honors, after averaging 24.4 points and 16.2 rebounds in the best-of-seven series.

As he always does when he receives any recognition, he humbly shared the credit with the rest of the team.

"I'm thankful for my teammates because they never gave up. I'm also thankful for the coaching staff, management, and fans for always being there," said the 6-foot-11 star, who also secured the Best Player of the Conference plum earlier in the week.

San Miguel coach Leo Austria knew that if they wanted to finish the job on Friday night, they needed to unleash their most deadly weapon.

"It's money time, so let's go to June Mar," Austria told his players during the pivotal fourth quarter. "I've known June Mar ever since. Sometimes we ask him, 'June Mar, are we going to win?' He'll respond, 'Yes coach, we're going to win.'"

Teammate Chris Ross believes that Fajardo, with his consistent dominant performances, will soon be mentioned in the same breath as PBA legend Mon Fernandez.

"40 and 20 in a closeout game? That's for you guys to talk about. I know that Mon Fernandez is up there with [19] championships, but June Mar is on his way," Ross proudly said.

The veteran point guard also mentioned that the entire San Miguel team benefits from Fajardo's greatness and selflessness.

"He's in the conversation of probably being the best player ever to play in the PBA and we're reaping the benefits from it. I think he could probably average 30 if he wanted to, but I don't think it's in him," Ross said. "He wants to share the limelight and he wants to pass the ball. He doesn't want it to be all about him. He really wants to be treated like everybody else."

He may not want special recognition, but at 28 years old, Fajardo is a six-time champion, four-time season MVP, two-time Finals MVP, and six-time BPC.

The reigning season MVP did not disappoint in Game 5. He anchored the Beermen's final push in regulation, scoring 12 of the last 15 points that allowed them to force overtime. Battling through cramps and exhaustion, he continued to take charge in the double overtime period.

"I did not feel the exhaustion. I experienced cramps, but my team was relying on me to produce," Fajardo said after playing for 54 minutes. "It's a good thing I made my baskets in the fourth quarter until the end."

In the end, it was again Fajardo delivering another dominant performance for the Beermen.