'Muscle man' Vic Manuel raring to get back in action after injury-plagued 2016 season
Alaska forward Vic Manuel says he's close to 100 percent after sitting out most of the PBA Governors Cup due to a pestering thigh injury. Jaime Campos

ALASKA bruiser Vic Manuel has yet to return to top form, but assured the Aces' fans he will be ready in time for the new PBA season which opens on November 20. 

"Tingin ko naman 100 percent na ako bago opening," Manuel told SPIN.ph after the team's fans' day at the Gatorade Hoops Center in Manduloyong on Friday.

"Talagang tinutukan ng mga trainers namin injury ko e. Nakukuha ko na uli timing ko, nakakasabay na ako sa team kaya tingin ko ready na ready na ako ulit." 

After missing most of the Aces' games in the Governors' Cup last season due to a right calf injury, Manuel said he is eager to hop back on the court and help the team in its title conquest.

"Oo all-out na talaga ako (sa Philippine Cup)," said Manuel, who added that the team's goal is to finally win the championship after falling short in the All-Filipino Cup last year. "Sobrang gustong gusto ko na maglaro. Excited na ako ngayong season." 

Winning a championship, however, won't get any easier with most of the other ballclubs bolstering their lineups in the offseason, according to the Alaska forward.

Alaska's roster, on the other hand, remained mostly intact with the addition of promising rookie Carl Bryan Cruz, who was the team's only pickup during the league's rookie draft last October 30. 

Still, Manuel is optimistic his team can finally capture the elusive trophy this year. 

"Hirap mag-expect so kailangan step by step muna," he said. "Kailangan mas maging agresibo pa kami sa depensa namin."

Follow the writer on Twitter: @janbballesteros