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Huge blow for Alaska as Racal out with ACL injury

Kevin Racal, Alaska's primary stopper, may be out until next year's Philippine Cup. PBA Images (file photo)
By Ivan Saldajeno

MANILA--Alaska's campaign in the ongoing PBA season suffered a huge blow as swingman Kevin Racal suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury during the team's season opener against TNT.

"Unfortunately, the official result [of the magnetic resonance imaging test] is that he did suffer a complete ACL injury," Aces coach Jeffrey Cariaso confirmed on Thursday.

Racal suffered the injury while guarding Jayson Castro in the third quarter their Sunday night match.

An ACL injury usually takes up at least six months of recovery following a surgery, which means Racal, who already suffered one during his college days with Letran, is out for the remainder of the season and likely next year's Philippine Cup.

"He's done for this bubble," Cariaso added.

Racal has been Alaska's primary perimeter defender since he was drafted 11th overall in the 2015 Draft, so his absence will be clearly evident the rest of the way.

"The challenge is for our guards and our wings to step up defensively," Cariaso further said.

The Aces will face the Magnolia Hotshots on Saturday night at the Angeles University Foundation Sports and Cultural Center.

Good thing for Alaska, Maverick Ahanmisi just arrived at the PBA bubble after recovering from his own injury.

Once cleared to join, the combo guard could become available against Magnolia.

Follow him on Twitter: @IvanSaldajeno_

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