PBA: Alaska's Racal to exit bubble, set for surgery

Camille B. Naredo, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 21 2020 12:11 PM

Alaska's Kevin Racal. PBA Media Bureau.

MANILA, Philippines -- Alaska's Kevin Racal is the second player to exit the PBA bubble in Clark, Pampanga after suffering an injury.

Racal tore the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his right knee in the Aces' very first game of the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup, a 100-95 defeat to TNT Tropang Giga last October 11.

Head coach Jeff Cariaso confirmed on Tuesday night that Racal is now set to leave the bubble Wednesday to undergo surgery.

"We're praying for Kevin," Cariaso said after the Aces completed a 120-82 mauling of the Blackwater Elite at the Angeles University Foundation Gym in Angeles City.

"Yes, he is leaving tomorrow (Wednesday), unfortunately. But you know, he's always with us. I told him, 'Get the surgery so you can come back sooner'," he explained. "So that's what we're doing."

Racal, 29, played 13 minutes and scored eight points in their loss to the Tropang Giga, where Alaska wasted a double-digit lead in the first half.

He had to be helped off the floor after suffering the injury. Without Racal, one of the Aces' best perimeter defenders, Alaska had no answer for TNT's Roger Pogoy who exploded for a career-best 45 points.

Racal watched the next three Alaska games from the sidelines before he officially departed the bubble Wednesday. The Aces now have a 2-2 record.

San Miguel's Terrence Romeo was the first player to exit the bubble after suffering a shoulder injury in a game against TNT.