ALAB Pilipinas will pace Bobby Ray Parks Jr. in the days leading up to its next match against the Westports Malaysia Dragons amid revelations the star player has been playing through a strained right shoulder.
Alab head coach Mac Cuan admitted Parks has been playing through a number of knocks, including an injured shoulder that hobbled him in Alab’s overtime victory over Singapore on Sunday.
Parks, however, still managed to contribute nine points, three rebounds, three assists, three steals, and a block in their 64-62 overtime win to gain a 7-4 win-loss slate.
“He’s pretty banged up now. He also got elbowed in the mouth and knee-to-knee din,” said Cuan.
Parks has been favoring his shoulder as early as late last month in a game against the Saigon Heat but has not missed a game, sustaining his form as perhaps the best local player in the ABL this season.
In fact, Parks was apologetic after Alab Pilipinas' loss in Davao City to the Saigon Heat last February 5 despite a 27-point performance for the Philippine-based squad.
Heading to the crucial stretch of the ABL season, Cuan said he intends to give Parks enough rest in the coming days leading to a crucial home-and-away series against the reigning champion Dragons.
Alab takes on Malaysia on Friday at the Baliwag Star Arena in Baliwag, Bulacan before heading to Kuala Lumpur to play the Dragons on Sunday at the MABA Stadium.
The two games are crucial if Alab hopes to close in on leader Singapore, which has a 10-4 win-loss slate.
“We’ll manage him and make sure he gets his treatment and rest in between practice so he can be ready for Friday,” Cuan said.