Monday, September 24, 2012

Hornets workout Aguilar; Ray Parks to be recommended for NBA workouts


Source : Philippine Star Sports

MANILA, Philippines – Japeth Aguilar continued to make rounds in the NBA, trying his luck with the New Orleans Hornets this time. reported yesterday that Aguilar’s US-based agent Chris McGarry told the popular basketball website that the Hornets are working out the Filipino forward.

Joseph Pimentel of the Asian Journal and Los Angeles correspondent of the ABS-CBN North America, who has been following Aguilar’s NBA saga, confirmed the report by posting photos of Aguilar working out with the Hornets on his twitter account.

The Hornets' General Manager Dell Demps is familiar with the Philippine basketball having played for the Pepsi franchise under the name 7-Up in the 1992 PBA Reinforced Conference, where the former NBA veteran guard led the squad to a runner-up finish losing to the Swift Mighty Meaties led by the flamboyant Tony Harris in the Finals.

The 6-9 Aguilar, a former no.1 draft pick in the PBA and played for the original Smart Gilas Pilipinas national team under Olympian coach Rajko Toroman, also attended workouts by two Western Conference teams, one of them reportedly to be the San Antonio Spurs., a fan site dedicated to the Spurs, however, reported after the news of the New Orleans’ workout broke out that Aguilar’s chances to land a roster spot in San Antonio got slimmer with the signing of Derrick Brown, who was the Charlotte Bobcats’ 40th overall selection in the 2009 NBA Rookie Draft.

After his contract with the Talk ‘n Text Tropang Texters expired last month, the son of former PBA player Peter Aguilar, decided to pursue his NBA dream and returned to the United States, where he played for the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers in the NCAA Division I for two seasons.

He first tried out for Bakersfield Jam, a D-League affiliate of the Atlanta Hawks, Toronto Raptors, Los Angeles Clippers and Phoenix Suns earlier this month that paved the way for him to work out with NBA teams and received offers from China, Canada and even the Harlem Globetrotters.

The Bakersfield assistant coach John Bryant told Pimentel after the try-out that Aguilar is an “intriguing prospect” and potentially could develop into a special player if he increases his aggressiveness.

“I think right now he’s a little too passive,” Bryant said. “He needs to be the man, mix that with some aggression.

“I want to see him throw an elbow or something. Get out of his shell a little and play loose. I think he’ll really be something special,” Bryant added.

Bobby Ray Parks may soon get a chance to work out for an NBA team.

Sheryl Reyes, a top agent who represents American imports for teams from all over the world, said she’s hooking up with several American colleagues to give the National University star an opportunity to showcase his wares stateside.

“My bet as to who among Filipino players has a chance of making it to the NBA is Ray Parks,” wrote Reyes in a text message to InterAKTV. “I will recommend him to my agents [in the US] and sponsor him for camps.”

The reigning UAAP Most Valuable Player led the Bulldogs to its first final four stint since 2001 with a victory over Far Eastern University on Sunday. Parks finished with 27 points, none more important than his go-ahead three-pointer in the final minute late in the game.

He is the son of seven-time PBA Best Import Bobby Parks, who was selected in the third round of the 1984 NBA draft before being cut by the squad before the start of the season.

The younger Parks has long harbored NBA dreams. “I’d want to be the first Filipino in the NBA,” he said in an interview last year prior to the start of his first UAAP campaign.

He spent the bulk of his teenage years in his father’s home state of Tennessee, where he developed into a top American high school prospect. He got the opportunity to play pickup basketball against former University of Memphis players who later made it to the in the NBA, such as Derrick Rose, Chris Douglas-Roberts, and Tyreke Evans.

He was recruited by several different American colleges and signed a letter of intent with the Georgia Tech, but chose to attend NU instead.

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