THE death of his father has motivated amateur star Bobby Ray Parks Jr. to pursue his NBA dream more than ever.
Saying it is what his dad and namesake had wanted for him, the National University standout said he will go to the US to try his luck in the world's premier basketball league after the next UAAP campaign.
“It has always been my dream to play in the NBA,” said Parks, whose father, legendary PBA import Bobby Parks Sr., died of cancer last March 30. “It is my dad’s dream for me … so that is what I am trying to fulfill right now.
“My dad’s death made me more hungry for it (NBA career), like I really want it bad. Before I only wanted it. Now it just filled me up more.”
The athletic 6-foot-4 guard-forward revealed that unlike Japeth Aguilar, he doesn’t intend to go through the NBA Developmental League route in his bid to crash the NBA ranks.
Instead, Parks said he plans to try out with some NBA teams with the help of his dad’s agent friends.
“(Dad) has lots of connections, he has introduced me to a lot of people. I think by the time he was gone, he really readied me. He knows I can handle it from there,” said the two-time UAAP MVP.
Parks disclosed he intends to put his name in the NBA lottery this summer and “see where it goes from there and hopefully join the (NBA) draft.”
“You can put your name in the draft twice. First time you put your name there, they (NBA) can take it out. But the second time, they gotta keep it there,” explained Parks.
Asked if he has ditched his plan to play in the PBA after his father's death, the young Parks was straightforward with his response: “The PBA? It will always be there (in my heart). We’ll see where it goes from here.
“But if I get a chance to play in the NBA, I am definitely taking that chance.”
In the meantime, Parks said his complete focus is on trying to lead the Bulldogs to this year’s UAAP championship.
“I am just focusing first on NU. Try to win this UAAP and see where it goes from there,” said Parks, while admitting his game went on a decline a bit since his dad passed away.
“I am still coping with all the things that happened about my dad, I feel that my game is not yet there. I’m on a slump,” he stressed.
“I’m doing all right, yes. But I know how I play, but it’s definitely different. The stats show otherwise. I know I still have more in me.”