ANGELES CITY – Kevin Racal appreciates the fitting send-off given him by Alaska on the eve of his exit in the PBA bubble.
The Aces booked a second straight win in the Philippine Cup on Tuesday night, a 120-82 blowout victory over Blackwater at the Smart 5G-powered Angeles University Foundation gym.
The entire team dedicated the victory to the 29-year-old Racal, who is bound for Manila Wednesday as he prepares for surgery to repair his ACL next week.
Racal was grateful for the team’s gesture as he wishes them to sustain their campaign and hopefully, end up on a happy note once the conference is over.
“Kailangan every game, every practice mag-improve sila kasi sa bubble na ito, no room for mistakes dapat. Sobrang bilis lang ng conference na ito. Hopefully, magtuluy-tuloy yung panalo nila and sana makaabot sila sa semis and sa finals,” said Racal as the Aces headed back to the Quest Hotel from the playing venue.
The former Letran standout is already scheduled for surgery, leading him to decide to leave the bubble.
“Gusto na rin ng Alaska, nila coach Jeff (Cariaso) na mapaaga yung operation ko para mas maaga rin ako makabalik,” he said.
Had no surgery been scheduled, the 6-foot-3 forward said he would have opted to stay on and be one with the Aces in their bid for the All-Filipino title.
But should opportunity arise and Alaska made it deep into the playoffs, Racal said he wants to go back in the bubble just to cheer and support the Aces from the stand.
“Kapag puwedeng makabalik pagkatapos ng surgery ko, kung puwede i-try kong manood para at least suporta lang sa Alaska,” vowed Racal.
Racal will be the second player to exit the PBA bubble after San Miguel's Terrence Romeo, who left Saturday after suffering a dislocated shoulder.