RAYRAY Parks will leave for the US this week to take his chance in workouts with NBA teams, making him unavailable for Gilas Pilipinas' campaign in the Fiba Asia Challenge Cup next month, his agent confirmed on Monday.
Parks made his Gilas debut in the Olympic Qualifying Tournament in Manila in July and was named by the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) to the 24-man pool for the September 9-18 tournament in Iran.
However, Charlie Dy said the NBA D-League veteran is set to leave for the US to attend different training camps arranged for him by his US-based agent as he continues to pursue his dream of playing in the world's biggest league.
The trip, Dy added, was set for Parks as early as a month ago by his US agent.
"Talagang paalis si Rayray," said Parks' longtime Philippine agent. "May valid reason naman s'ya, hindi 'yung ayaw lang n'ya."
Gilas team manager Butch Antonio said the Parks camp was informed when the SBP included him in the 24-man pool, but at the same time said they understood that the former Texas Legend had 'other pursuits.'
But he also undersdands Parks' bid to make it to the NBA.
"Once things are more firm, his commitment naman to us is there," said Antonio. "It's just that kailangan rin naman 'nyang i-pursue ang kanyang pangarap.
"Of course he still wants to pursue his dream and we support him there."
Asked if there is any chance Parks can make the Gilas trip, Dy aired his doubts, saying, "Yung mga workouts nya, hanggang towards the end of September na naka-schedule."
"Inumpisahan na n'ya yan. Parang one last try. Kasi pinag-buhusan na n'ya ng panahon, pagod at oras, lahat," he added. "Alam naman natin, he really promised his dad na ipu-pursue n'ya (ang dream to play in the NBA)."