MPBL still waiting on Ray Parks Jr.’s papers to see if he’s a local

MPBL still waiting on Parks’ papers to see if he’s a local
Is Ray Parks Jr. a local or a Filipino-foreigner - that is the question yet to be answered by the MPBL

Whether or not Ray Parks Jr. will play in the Maharlika Pilipinas Basketball League (MPBL) is yet to be determined.

The 25-year-old star’s stint for the Mandaluyong El Tigre is far from final as the upstart league has not yet decided if he is a local or a Filipino-foreigner. “We would like again to make it straight for everybody and of course, kay Ray na ‘di pa namin nakikita yung papers (niya),” commissioner Kenneth Duremdes said in the league-wide owners’ meeting on Wednesday at the Raffles Hotel in Makati. 

The MPBL has instituted a rule that states that only one Filipino-foreigner will be allowed for each team.

As such, there is a question if Parks Jr. is a local or a Filipino-foreigner as Mandaluyong also has another Filipino-American in Lo Domingo.

Explaining the rule, Duremdes said, “We’re just a growing league. The vision of the league is to give a chance to homegrown players. ‘Di naman natin sinasabi na bawal (ang Fil-foreigners) kaya nga we’re allowing one and 6-4 ang limit sa height.”

He then continued, “‘Di naman kasi ganun kalaki ang players sa probinsya kaya ganun. Step-by-step tayo kasi nga we’re striving to be a place for homegrown players.”

With that, the El Tigre will have to choose between Parks Jr., if he will be considered a Filipino-foreigner, and Domingo.

For the recently-crowned Asean Basketball League champion and back-to-back Local MVP, however, Mandaluyong should not even have to do that.

Questioning the controversial rule, he took to Twitter earlier in the day to say, “First time in my life I was considered an American in my own home country. Dito ako lumaki. Dito ako pinanganak. May Filipino passport ako.”

Parks Jr. is the son of legendary PBA import Bobby Ray Parks Sr. He was born and bred in Paranaque and eventually suited up for National University in the UAAP.

He also had stints with Gilas Pilipinas and the Hapee Fresh Fighters in the PBA D-League before taking his talents to Alab Pilipinas where he played as a local and not an Asean Heritage import.

The MPBL made it clear, though, that it wants nothing more than to have the younger Parks playing in the league. “As much as we want Ray to play kasi malaking attraction siya and one of the players, again, meron tayong guidelines na na-set. Kung meron na silang pinasang papers, saka natin malalaman,” Duremdes said.

As for when his fate will be finalized, the league commissioner said the deliberations for the lineups of all teams will come sooner than later. “Owners’ meeting ngayon then next nito is coaches’ meeting. Dun na namin ise-set yung technical guidelines,” he said.

He then continued, “Dun na namin ise-set yung submission ng final lineup para ma-screen na ng committee.”

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Follow this writer on Twitter, @riegogogo.

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