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    Alex Nuyles savors new lease on life in MPBL after jinxed PBA career

    Jun 13, 2019
    PHOTO: Marlo Cueto

    ALEX Nuyles is overjoyed to finally be back on the court after almost a year of inactivity.

    And what better way for the Camalig, Albay native to make his comeback than with the Bicol Volcanoes in the 2020 Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) Lakan Cup.

    "Parang ayokong magpatalo kasi dala namin yung Bicol. Pag uuwi ka, ayaw mong maging talunan at ayaw mong mapahiya sila," the 6-foot-2 winger said.

    The former first-round pick of Rain or Shine in the 2013 draft looked close to his old form in his MPBL debut, firing 22 points and seven rebounds in 36 minutes of play.

    Unfortunately, his efforts weren't enough to help the expansion team score the opening-day win, falling to Basilan, 94-83 on Wednesday night.

    But for Nuyles, getting back on the court is already a triumph in itself, especially with how the 29-year-old's damned PBA career came to an end.


      Nuyles had a promising start to his PBA career, but it all quickly went downhill after he was left unprotected in the 2014 expansion draft where he was picked up by Blackwater.

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      He ended up at Columbian [then KIA] where a dispute with management over alleged unpaid wages had him spending time in the freezer until he was signed by TNT.

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      It was tougher the past couple of years for the former Adamson Soaring Falcon, with him struggling to get on the court for the KaTropa because of his nagging injuries.

      Through a two-year span, Nuyles has gone under the knife four times - once for a hip injury, and thrice for recurring tendonitis on his right knee that beset his PBA career.

      "Sobrang hirap makabalik. Ito yung tipong kaya mo pa pala pero sa isip pa lang," he said. "Yung katawan, medyo bumibigay pa, so dapat tingnan mo pa rin yung diet mo, strength and conditioning, back to basics ka.

      "Kung ano yung ginagawa mo sa college, yun ang ginagawa ko dito."

      Despite all of those hardships, Nuyles said he was grateful for his time with TNT.

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      "Sobrang nagpapasalamat ako sa TNT at kay boss MVP [Manny V. Pangilinan], sa organization at sa teammates ko. Kahit lagi akong injured, talagang di sila nag-give up sa akin for two years na mahigit. Wala akong problema doon," he said.

      Nuyles spent the past year getting himself back in game shape. Although he returned to the hardcourt on Wednesday, said that he's still far from his peak form.

      "Nasa 50-percent pa lang ako, kasi talagang inaamin sa akin ng conditioning coach ko na paangat pa lang din ako. Dinadahan-dahan namin kasi galing pa rin ako ng injury," he said.

      He hopes it's not too late to recapture his old form.

      "Focus ko lang talaga na makabalik," he said.

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      PHOTO: Marlo Cueto
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