WITH Bobby Ray Parks Jr's PBA draft plans still up in the air, Rain or Shine team co-owner Raymund Yu said the team is now setting its sight on landing anyone among Greg Slaughter, Ian Sangalang, or Raymund Almazan.
The Elasto Painters currently holds the first round draft rights of Barako Bull, a potential lottery pick considering the Energy Cola were one of two teams that finished at the bottom of the standings in the league’s first two conferences.
Yu admitted that should Parks make himself available for the draft, there’s no doubt the team will use its pick on the National University star player.
But in an earlier talk with Spin.ph, the son of the late legendary PBA import Bobby Parks said he is still focused now on his campaign in the UAAP and in his dream of playing in the NBA.
And having learned that, Yu said the Elasto Painters might as well scratch out Parks among their rookie prospects at the moment.
“As much as we want to have Rayray sa draft to make it more exciting siguro mas makakadali sa amin `yung proseso kasi wala na siya sa pagpipilian (namin),” Yu said.
“Kasi sa totoo lang, kailangan namin ng malaki sa team. Pero kung magiging available si Parks, i-fo-forego muna namin `yun. Ibang talent nung bata na yun eh,” added the hands-on team owner and longtime business partner of co-owner Terry Que.
Yu is conceding the top pick to San Mig Coffee, which owns the draft rights originally held by rookie team Globalport Batang Pier.
“Malamang kanila na yun (first pick). And knowing coach Tim Cone’s penchant for getting big guys, hindi ako magugulat if they tab Slaughter,” said Yu, reiterating Cone’s fondness for tall, reliable players in the past such as EJ Feihl, James Walkvist, Kevin Ramas, Alex Araneta, and Dickie Bachmann, among others.
“Whoever San Mig will pick, `yung next best available ang kukunin namin,” the Asian Coatings franchise executive said.
Yu hinted the hard-nosed 6-foot-7 Sangalang will be a good fit for the Elasto Painters, but he doesn’t deny the potential of another outstanding young center in Almazan.
“Maraming upside si Sangalang. He’s tough and agile for his height, pero nakita namin ang capabilities ni Almazan. He has been practicing with us,” revealed the Rain or Shine boss.
“I think Almazan is one of the biggest reasons why Letran currently totes a 7-0 record sa NCAA. Not because he is coached by Caloy (Garcia). His performance speaks for itself. He has to be considered,” he added.
The 2013 PBA draft is set on November 3 at the Robinson’s Place in Ermita Manila.
The league has already opened its doors to applicants that might also include Nico Salva, Alex Nuyles, Justine Chua, among others.