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Alaska Aces send Manuel to Phoenix Fuel Masters

By Michael Angelo S. Murillo, Senior Reporter

Philippine Basketball Association forward Vic Manuel finally got his wish to be traded after the Alaska Aces sent him to the Phoenix Super LPG Fuel Masters on Tuesday.

The Aces also shipped their first (seventh overall) and second (19th overall) round picks in this year’s rookie draft in the deal which was sent to the league office and eventually approved by the trade committee.

In exchange for Mr. Manuel and the two picks, Phoenix sent guard Brian Heruela and the team’s first-round pick (sixth overall) in the March 14 rookie draft, which it got in a previous trade with the Magnolia Hotshots Pambansang Manok for Calvin Abueva.

The Fuel Masters also gave the Aces their second-round pick (16th overall) in this year’s draft and first-round pick for Season 47.

Mr. Manuel, 33, requested for a trade last month over what he felt was Alaska’s lack of interest in re-signing him after his contract lapsed last year.

But Alaska said the player was part of their plans and intent on signing him.

Phoenix was one of the teams Mr. Manuel preferred to be traded to if a deal was to happen.

The “Muscleman” Manuel averaged 15.9 points, six rebounds and 2.1 assists in the PBA “bubble” last year for the Aces, where they reached the quarterfinals.

In Phoenix, Mr. Manuel is expected to fill the void left by do-it-all Abueva, who was traded to Magnolia last week.

The Fuel Masters also look to add key pieces from the picks they got.

Alaska, meanwhile, got a veteran player in Mr. Heruela but on top of that it got picks it can use to further fill up its roster for what seemingly is a youth movement in the team for the upcoming season.

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