by Jonas Terrado
Games Wednesday (Ynares Center, Antipolo City)
4:30 p.m. — NorthPort vs Alaska
7 p.m. — NLEX vs TNT KaTropa
Meeting high expectations of observers is far from Ray Parks Jr.’s concern as he began his much-anticipated PBA debut last night.
Parks believes past experiences in the NBA D-League and the ASEAN Basketball League will be beneficial as he tries to turn Blackwater into a winner in the PBA Commissioner’s Cup.
Ray Parks Jr. of the Blackwater Elite goes up for a layup against Ranidel De Ocampo of the Meralco Bolts. (PBA Images)
The Elite opened their campaign at press time against the Meralco Bolts at the Mall of Asia Arena.
“I’m not here to prove anything, personally,” Parks said. “At the end of the day, I felt that I played in a lot of international leagues and high-level competitions so it’s just another chapter that is being opened in my career.”
The 26-year-old cager added: “(I’m) just trying to take it for what it is and try to be a professional.”
Blackwater coach Aries Dimaunahan is hoping the positives Parks will be bringing in would result in better results for the Elite.
Dimaunahan, who also made his head coaching debut against Meralco, has been pleased with how Parks has accustomed himself since inking a two-conference contract last April.
“Ray is such a team player and a leader,” Dimaunahan said. “Even though he’s a rookie on paper, he has carried himself like a veteran.”
“He’s really a welcome addition and has done very well during our tune-ups and hopefully it can translate into victories,” added the rookie mentor.
Blackwater is aiming for better things in the midseason tournament after going 2-9 in the Philippine Cup under coach Bong Ramos.
Aside from Parks, the Elite have import Alex Stepheson to reinforce the squad.
Tags: Alex Stepheson , Aries Dimaunahan , ASEAN Basketball League , Bong Ramos , NBA , NBA D-League , PBA , PBA commissioner , PBA Commissioner’s Cup , Ray Parks , Ray Parks Jr. , TNT Katropa