Gilas Pilipinas: Parks begged off out of respect to seniors

Ray Parks Jr. (ASEAN Basketball League photo)

By Kevin Sox

Blackwater Elite rookie wingman Ray Parks Jr. took to social media platform Twitter his sentiments following reports that he has decided not to join the Gilas Pilipinas men national team pool for the upcoming 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup in August.

“Woke up this morning to a misleading article … For people to actually believe that I don’t want to represent my country is crazy,” wrote Parks on his account, adding that he has always kept the Philippines in his thoughts when he played for Alab Pilipinas in the ASEAN Basketball League and when he tried his luck in the NBA.

National team head coach Yeng Guiao stated a few days earlier that from what he understood, Parks declined due to other priorities.

But Parks clarified that part of the issue as well.

“First off, 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 (ang) ABL stint ko kaya sobrang thankful ako,” wrote Parks.

Parks was already drafted by the Elite during the 2018 PBA Draft but went on to finish his third stint with the ABL before suiting up in the PBA.

“Tapos ngayon, wala kaming import tapos mawawala (ako?) Nahihiya lang din ako sa (Blackwater).”

The two-time UAAP MVP concluded by saying one of the main reasons he begged off was because he wanted to respect those who played in the World Cup qualifiers that got Gilas to the international stage, implying that they should be the ones prioritized for the final 12 selection.

“Nahihiya din ako sa mga players na naglaro during the qualifiers and nagpakahirap to get our spot at the World Cup,” he noted.

“Sino ba namang proud na Pinoy na hindi mahihiya kasi each player who played are deserving of a spot. Nirerespeto ko sila at yung pinaghirapan nila.”