Alaska Aces still looking at trade options for Vic Manuel

Vic Manuel's agent Danny Espiritu confirmed that the Alaska Aces and his client aren't close to striking a new deal and that, in fact, trading the 6'4" forward is still very much an option for the team.

"They (Alaska management) are talking to several teams but at this point, nothing is definite. And Dickie (Bachman, Alaska team governor) has advised me to talk to Jeff to know Vic's status," Espiritu said.

The veteran player agent added that Alaska management plans to change its original offer to just a one-year guaranteed pact as opposed to an earlier discussion of giving Manuel a two-year pact without a performance clause.

"I will first have to call coach Jeff to know what he has in mind since Vic is also waiting," shared Espiritu. "Of course, we are hoping that if they want him (Manuel) traded, they won't try to get someone that the other team wouldn't want to release."

On Friday, Alaska coach Jeff Cariaso reiterated that nothing is set as far as the future of Manuel with the Aces is concerned, belying reports that the two sides are close to reaching a deal.

"I would like to say that at this point, there's still nothing definite with Vic. I know there's report he is coming back (with Alaska) but that's not true. We are still where we were a month ago where he asked for a trade," Cariaso told The Game on Friday.

Cariaso would have wanted Manuel to stay with the Aces, but he was candid enough to say that Alaska management is "respecting" Manuel's wishes to be traded.

"We're respecting his wishes. We're trying to see if there's still remaining offers out there. At the same time make him happy," stressed Cariaso. "But it has to be fair for Alaska and make us happy."

Cariaso added that at this point, Alaska is trying its best to make sure any move on Manuel's future will be beneficial for both camps.

"I have an awesome relationship with him. We talk all the time, but his wishes I think are his priority. We're doing what's best for both camps as of the moment," he said.

The 33-year-old Manuel was the Aces' top performer in last year's PBA bubble after averaging 15.91 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.09 assists. His contract with Alaska expired on Dec. 31.