TNT guard Bobby Ray Parks is focused on the positives even after a semifinals elimination at the hands of Meralco deprived him and his team a finals berth in the PBA Governors' Cup.
"Definitely a different chapter, a chapter of growth. It's a good way to end the year," he said Tuesday.
After arriving from a struggling Blackwater team, which actually reaped the benefits of having the second-generation star on board with a playoff spot as a third seed last conference, Parks wasted no time trying to make his mark with an already playoff-bound KaTropa.
In three games with TNT in the eliminations, Parks flashed potential to be one of the team's primary options and tallied 14.0 points (47 percent on field goals, 43 percent on 3s), 5.3 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 0.3 steals.
His scoring numbers took a dip in the semifinals against the Bolts -- he averaged 12.2 points, though he still added 6.8 rebounds, 3.6 dimes and 1.6 steals -- but Parks chalked that up to continued adjustment to his new team.
"It was a mid-season adjustment, but like I said from the beginning, I just tried to get integrated more to the system, figure out roles. And playing in the semis in the PBA is tough against a great and well-coached team. They knocked down shots and we'll just learn and get better from that," he said.
With a full season behind him, the only remaining question now is whether he can sustain his gains with TNT entering next season.
Parks only signed a one-season contract after being taken by the Elite with their no. 2 pick in last year's Rookie Draft, and that is set to expire at the end of this year.
The 26-year-old said there haven't been any negotiations that took place when TNT's campaign was ongoing.
"Wala pa namang sinabi. For the most part, we wanted to win this and try to make it to the finals. Pero wala pa naman na-mention," he shared.
(They haven't said anything yet. For the most part, we wanted to win this and try to make it to the Finals. But nothing has been mentioned yet.)
TNT head coach Bong Ravena was mum on the situation and said Parks' contract was something that has yet to be discussed in the near future.
"Depende. Baka magbago pa. Baka magbago rin ang isip niya, magbago ang isip namin. Tignan namin, assess namin lahat. We have to sit down and think kung ano pa ang kailangan ng team," he said.
(It depends. Things might change. He could change his mind, we could change our mind. We'll see, we'll assess everything. We have to sit down and think what else the team needs.)
Parks, meanwhile, said he's looking forward to having fruitful negotiations with TNT brass.
"Hopefully naman, God willing. Blessing naman to be in TNT and to play in the PBA, for any team," he said.
(Hopefully. God willing. It's a blessing to be in TNT, and to play in the PBA for any team.)