RAY Parks was brutally frank when he spoke to reporters following Mandaluyong’s 86-74 loss to Muntinlupa in his Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) on Wednesday at the Smart Araneta Coliseum.
The two-time Asean Basketball League local MVP got his numbers in the loss, posting 21 points, 10 rebounds and four assists but struggled to stay on the floor as he was hobbled by foul trouble.
Parks got called for an offensive foul four times, which left him riding the bench for long stretches.
With him being the centerpiece of the controversial ‘One Fil-Foreign per team’ rule, Parks, son of seven-time PBA best import awardee Bobby Parks, was straight to the point in saying that he felt like he was the target of the referees.
“I know, like I said, they don’t want me in this league. I’ll be honest. They don’t want me in this league. I could make that statement tomorrow or whenever, I’m saying it. They don’t want me in this league,” said Parks who lived his early years in Mandaluyong before growing up Paranaque.
“First time I’ve ever seen in my life, four offensive fouls. I attended the orientation, I know what a foul is. I know what an offensive foul is. They don’t want me here,” he added.
Aware that he can become more of a target, particularly after this statement, the former National University star said that he’ll just take it as a challenge moving forward.
One thing that he’s thankful for is the chance to play for the home crowd, saying that he enjoys putting on a show for ‘as much as he could,’ or for as long as the referees would let him play on the court.
“You take it as a challenge. It’s another day. They don’t want me here but I’m here. I know they don’t want me here. This is gonna be trending but they don’t want me here. I knew that coming in, they don’t want me here,” Parks continued.
“It’s my home though. I enjoy playing in front of the crowd as much as I could (laughs) at the end of the day, they don’t want me here,” he added.
The 6’4 wingman was clear that he won’t be playing in the league for long as he plans to just honor his commitment to the El Tigre and finish out what was agreed upon between him and the owners.
With his comments after his first game, that’s not a surprise anymore.
“At the end of the day this is a stepping stone for me. I’ll be honest. It’s a stepping stone. I’m not gonna be here long.”