VIC Manuel will once again be with Romeo Travis in the PBA Finals, but this time they'll be on opposing sides.
Manuel and Travis fought side by side at Alaska during the 2015 Governors’ Cup Finals where the Aces were swept by the mighty San Miguel Beermen.
Three years after, Manuel’s Aces will be looking to beat Travis’ Magnolia Hotshots in a best-of-seven championship series that is too close to call.
Manuel, 31, admitted the task will be difficult, especially since he is expected to be one of the Alaska players that will be defending Travis- the best import in that 2015 conference.
“Ang hirap kalaban ni Romeo eh. Kaya ko nga tinawag siya dati nung teammates kami na Mr. Basic. ‘Yung basketball sobrang basic sa kanya, sobrang talino maglaro,” said Manuel.
“Napanalunan niya ‘yung Best Import noon dahil doon. Mahirap talaga siya depensahan pagdating sa practice. Sa mga big guys, ‘yun ang magiging problema namin,” he added.
Manuel said he is no longer surprised that Travis scored 50 points in Game Four of the PBA Governors’ Cup semifinals against Barangay Ginebra.
“Kayang-kaya niyang gawin ‘yun,” he added.
That doesn't mean Manuel is shirking the responsibility.
“Ready ako. Sanay naman ako bantayan siya pero ang hirap depensahan. Noong practice namin, malakas siya. Gagawin ko ‘yung best ko,” said the hulking Aces forward.