|No. 27 – Alaska Aces|
January 3, 1982 |
Olongapo City, Zambales, Philippines
|Listed height||6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)|
|Listed weight||200 lb (91 kg)|
|College||Philippine Christian University|
|PBA draft||2006 Round: 1 / Pick: 5th overall|
|Selected by the San Miguel Beermen|
|2006–2007||San Miguel Beermen|
|2008–2009||Barako Bull Energy Boosters|
|2009–2010||Sta. Lucia Realtors|
|Career highlights and awards|
Gabriel "Gabby" Espinas (born January 3, 1982 in Olongapo City, Zambales, Philippines) is a Filipino professional basketball player who plays for the Alaska Aces in the Philippine Basketball Association. He was born of an African-American father, who was once stationed in Subic but died when Gabby was only five years old, and a Filipina mother. A 6'4" forward, he was drafted fifth overall by the Beermen in the 2006 PBA Draft. He made a name in the amateur ranks as the first-ever Rookie of the Year-Most Valuable Player of the NCAA while playing for the PCU Dolphins.
Espinas began to play for PCU in the NCAA in the 2004 season. With Espinas, Robert Sanz, Jayson Castro, and Ian Garrido playing together with head coach Loreto Tolentino, the Dolphins made it to the Final Four for the first time since 2002.
He became the first NCAA player to be named as the Rookie of the Year and the Most Valuable Player in the same season. San Beda's Sam Ekwe followed suit in the 2006 season.
From 2005–06, he led the Dolphins to the finals only to lose to Letran and San Beda, respectively. However, he was still named to the Mythical Five in both seasons.
After a stint with Harbour, he played his final two conferences with the Hapee-PCU squad, leading them to the semifinals in the Heroes Cup.
In the 2006 PBA Draft, Espinas was drafted fifth overall by the San Miguel Beermen. After his time with PCU, he was quickly signed by San Miguel to a rookie contract. He made his PBA debut in a game against Red Bull and played an impressive performance despite the loss.
He was then traded by the Air21 Express to the Red Bull Barako for a first round pick in the 2009 PBA Draft. The pick was then used to draft Japeth Aguilar as the first overall in 2009 by the Whoopers.
In 2009, he was again traded to the Sta. Lucia Realtors, his fourth team, for Sta. Lucia's 2009 first round pick.
- Espinas boosts stock, gets NCAA Player of Week award
- Gameface.ph Hardcore Five of 2005
- Gameface.ph Hardcore Five of 2006
|NCAA Seniors' Basketball Rookie of the Year
Kelvin dela Peña
|NCAA Seniors' Basketball Most Valuable Player