Vic Manuel made sure the way things ended with his Alaska stint won’t overshadow the good memories he had with them.
Manuel paid tribute to Aces in a social media post that came hours after the PBA approved his trade to the Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters in a deal that included a swapping of draft picks.
“My HOME! My FAMILY for almost 7 years! Thankyou @alaska_aces!” Manuel said on his Instagram account. “Wish you a goodluck and all the best! Same GOAL! New JOURNEY!”
The player nicknamed “The Muscleman” blossomed into one of the league’s best big man after joining Alaska in 2014.
During his stint, Manuel made five Finals appearances and was a strong candidate to capture the Best Player of the Conference award in the 2018 Commissioner’s Cup, only to lose to eventual winner June Mar Fajardo of San Miguel Beer.
Alaska was hoping to sign Manuel to an extension following last season’s Philippine Cup bubble but the two sides couldn’t come to terms, subsequently resulting in the latter’s request for a trade.
Things appeared to have been ironed out when Manuel’s agent Danny Espiritu said the two sides were close to an agreement, though Alaska coach Jeffrey Cariaso clarified that nothing changed since the trade demands were made.
It stayed the same until Tuesday when Alaska found a trade partner in Phoenix, which was almost a week removed from sending Calvin Abueva to Magnolia.