Ahanmisi, Maliksi, Newsome triumphant in PBA All-Star side events


Maverick Ahanmisi successfully defended his Obstacle Challenge crown for the second straight year as Allein Maliksi and Chris Newsome won the Three-Point Shootout and Slam Dunk Competition, respectively, in the 2017 PBA All-Star Week side events on Friday night at Quezon Convention Center in Lucena, Quezon.

Rain or Shine’s Ahanmisi cruised to his second straight title after finishing the obstacle course in just 25.8 seconds, besting five other finalists who didn’t even come close to his lightning-quick time.

Star’s Maliksi meanwhile thrived under pressure in the Three-Point Shootout, knocking down the last balls he needed to secure the award.

With LA Tenorio scoring 18 points, Maliksi had come into the final rack still trailing. But the hot-shooting forward converted his final four attempts to finish with 20 points and win the competition.

Back-to-back champion Terrence Romeo made it to the final, but he only finished third in the final with 17 markers.

Meralco’s Newsome meanwhile edged James Forrester in the final to be crowned the new Slam Dunk king, dethroning three-time champion Rey Guevarra who failed to advance past the first round.

For his winning dunk, the 2016 Rookie of the Year juggled three balls in his hand before throwing down a slam. That helped him pile up 87 points in the dunk-off, just one point ahead of Forrester’s 86 which was spiked by his perfect 50 in the first round of the final.

Despite failing to advance, Jammer Jamito stole the show. After inviting teammate Japeth Aguilar to the court and stand under the rim, everyone expected the Ginebra reserve to dunk over the 6’9″ forward.

But instead of jumping over Aguilar, Jamito instead pulled off a sidestep to avoid Aguilar before throwing down a dunk, providing comic relief to the event that gathered some of the league’s best players.