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Fuel their NBA ambitions.
The dream of seeing a homegrown Filipino player make it to the NBA remained a dream in 2016 despite mild steps by Bobby Ray Parks, Kobe Paras and Kiefer Ravena in achieving that elusive goal.
The sons of former PBA players spend most of the year plying their trade in America, hoping that each game would put them within reach of fulfilling what this basketball-crazy nation has been longing to see for decades.
While Parks, Paras and Ravena are still way ahead in totally realizing their ambitions, almost everyone seems to agree that they made the right decision.
The first half of 2016 saw the son of the late Bobby Parks in Frisco, Texas playing for the Texas Legends of the NBA D-League. The former National University had been left undrafted in the 2015 NBA draft but found his way in the D-League after being selected by the Legends in the developmental league’s draft.
Parks, however, played limited minutes for the Legends, averaging 4.6 points, 1.9 rebounds, 0.8 assists and 0.6 steals in 32 games for Texas in the 2015-16 D-League.
Hopes of remaining in the D-League grew when Parks was taken by the Westchester Knicks in the draft, but failed to make the roster for the 2016-17 season. That prompted him to come back home by way of Alab Pilipinas in the ASEAN Basketball League.
While Parks has been one of the most outstanding players of the ongoing ABL season, he insists that his NBA dream remains alive and has been working on his game to maintain that goal.
Even as Parks is taking a brief stop towards that goal, Paras and Ravena are still in the US through different avenues.
Paras is currently part of Creighton University in the US NCAA while Ravena was taken as a developmental player by the Legends.
Paras landed at Omaha, Nebraska campus after he was forced to withdraw from UCLA over an academic issue. Since settling at Creighton, the son of two-time PBA Most Valuable Player Benjie Paras has been playing sparingly for the Jays, scoring 1.7 points per game in 6.7 minutes.
The slam dunk king of the FIBA 3×3 tournament insists that the little minutes is part of the process that he’s currently undertaking at Creighton.
Ravena, meanwhile, was signed as a developmental player by the Legends last November, but has yet to see action for the team in the D-League. The former Ateneo star, however, is using that status to hone his game and hopefully become part of the team’s roster.