Ray Parks denies declining Gilas pool invite due to different priorities
MANILA, Philippines—Blackwater rookie Bobby Ray Parks Jr. said that having “different priorities” wasn’t the reason why he declined an invite to the Gilas Pilipinas pool, contrary to what national head coach Yeng Guiao had said.
Guiao said on Thursday during Gilas second training of the week that Parks turned down a spot in the pool based on his understanding that the PBA freshman “has different priorities.”
Parks, though, said that didn’t accept the offer due to propriety and nothing else.
“I didn’t decline due to different priorities. Hiya oo, pero priority hindi. First conference ko pa lang sa PBA pinayagan na ako ng Blackwater tapusin ABL stint ko kaya sobrang thankful ako,” added Parks. “Tapos ngayon wala kaming import kaya nahihiya din ako sa Blackwater.”
Parks took to Twitter to air his side, saying he doesn’t want to take the spots of the more deserving players who have already played in the World Cup qualifiers.
“Nahihiya ako sa mga players na naglaro during the qualifiers and nagpakahirap to get our spot at the World Cup,” tweeted Parks Friday. “Sino ba namang proud na Pinoy na ‘di mahihiya kasi each player who played are deserving of a spot. Nirerespeto ko sila at yun ang pinaghirapan nila.”
Parks said he’s also being respectful of the Elite who patiently waited for him until the end of the 2018-19 ASEAN Basketball League season to join them at the start of the PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
The second overall pick of the 2019 PBA Rookie Draft missed the whole Philippine Cup since he was still playing for Alab Pilipinas where he won one ABL title and three Local MVPs.
Parks’ stay with Alab in the ABL coincided with Gilas games in the Fiba World Cup qualifiers and made him unavailable for national team duties since the SBP elected to have PBA players and naturalized center Andray Blatche represent the Philippines.
“For people to actually believe that I don’t want to represent my country is crazy. Kaya nga naglaro sa Alab and went abroad carrying the flag anywhere and everywhere I go.”
Blackwater’s patience, however, proved fruitful as Parks has been nothing short of marvelous for them putting up 23.4 points, the highest among locals, 6.0 rebounds, 3.4 assists, and 1.7 steals in the Commissioner’s Cup.
The Elite played their past game without Alex Stepheson, who had been dealing with health concerns, and that left Parks to carry much of the burden in their 127-106 loss to San Miguel with 23 points, 12 rebounds, and four assists.
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.