By Jonas Terrado
TNT KaTropa believes it is close to reaching an agreement on a contract extension with incoming sophomore Ray Parks Jr.
Team manager Gabby Cui said there’s a 95-percent chance that a deal can be reached early this week after the two parties spent the past few weeks trying to reach common ground.
“It’s almost there. Konti na lang,” Cui said after Saturday’s practice of Gilas Pilipinas at the Meralco Gym.
“Last week mga 80 percent. Now I’d say 95 percent,” he later added. “Hopefully tapos na so we can move on and we can concentrate on basketball.”
Parks signed a two-conference rookie contract with Blackwater before the start of last season’s Commissioner’s Cup. He skipped the Philippine Cup due to his ASEAN Basketball League stint with San Miguel Alab Pilipinas.
He was traded to TNT last November where he played nine games in the PBA Governors’ Cup, including the team’s five-game series loss to Meralco in the semifinals.
Parks had expressed his desire to stay with TNT after that series, even participating in practices during the negotiating period.
Gilas program director Tab Baldwin did acknowledge that the issues is perhaps a part of the reason why Parks has yet to attend practices of the national team for the 2021 FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers.
Cui acknowledged that the situation is something TNT and Parks have deal before things could get better.
“That what it is naman e,” said Cui. “But we have to go through this exercise talaga. I mean, him and kami on the TNT want to really thresh out everything, all the issues para he can play with a clear head. That’s what we want.”