Ex-NBA D-Leaguer Ray Parks on Kai Sotto: 'Send him overseas ASAP'
MANILA, Philippines – Not many know more about the extremely difficult path to the NBA than Ray Parks.
That’s why he has a few choice words for 16-year-old prodigy Kai Sotto. In a tweet on Wednesday, March 13, Parks wrote: "Should send him overseas ASAP."
This comes after the 7-foot-2 UAAP juniors MVP said he has received no less than 5 playing offers from top-tier European teams, including big Euroleague names such as Real Madrid and FC Barcelona. (READ: Kai Sotto could decide very soon on Europe offers, eyeing NBA as top goal)
Parks, the son of Hall of Famer import Bobby Parks, is no stranger to giving the old NBA dream a legitimate shot.
After going undrafted in the 2015 NBA draft, the former NU Bulldogs superstar and UAAP MVP still grinded out and got as far as the NBA D-League. There, he suited up for a 32-game stint with the Dallas Mavericks’ minor affiliate Texas Legends.
While the NBA doors never opened for him, the 26-year-old star is still making waves as a two-time MVP in the ABL and a top 2 draft selection in the PBA.
As for Sotto, he is now presented with a unique opportunity to fast-track his development by playing with pro ballers despite having two years left in his high school career.
And with former Euroleague MVP Luka Doncic currently playing as well as advertised with the Mavericks, the overseas path to the NBA is getting more attention than ever.
Incidentally, the 20-year-old Rookie of the Year candidate honed his craft with Real Madrid, the same team currently wooing Sotto.
Although the young wunderkind is still mulling his options with his family, it was he himself who set the NBA as the ultimate goal.
"[Importante] yung development ko as a player kasi puwede namang di ako pumili ng club pero magte-train lang ako sa kanila,” Sotto said. “Ang importante lang naman sa akin is mag-improve ako, magpagaling at magpalakas pa lalo dahil yung goal ko talaga is mag-NBA. Gagawin ko yung lahat para makapunta doon.”
(My development as a player is important because I may just not choose a club but I could train with them. What’s important for me is I improve and get stronger because my true goal is the NBA. I will do everything to get there.) – Rappler.com