MANILA, Philippines -- Former PBA Most Valuable Player Kelly Williams remains hopeful that Ray Parks and the TNT Tropang GIGA can work out their difference.
Parks, who helped TNT reach the finals of the 2020 PBA Philippine Cup, announced in early March that he will miss the upcoming season for "personal reasons."
No less than team owner Manny V. Pangilinan questioned Parks' decision on social media, and the two sides have been at an impasse since.
Williams, 39, told former PBA commissioner Noli Eala that he understands Parks' situation.
"On the outside, when you've dealt with the business for as long as I have, you get an understanding of how it can be," said Williams during Eala's "Power and Play" sports show this weekend.
"I don't know 100% his situation, and how everything went down. But I know how frustrating it can get as a player," he said.
In September 2020, Williams abruptly announced his retirement, a move that caught TNT management off-guard as well. But he was able to work things out with the team and signed a fresh two-year deal in March.
Williams is now hoping that the team and Parks can come to a similar resolution.
"I've reached out to Ray Ray, and we exchanged a little bit, so I get where he's at. And he knows how I feel about everything. I would just say, just like I told him it's no secret. Just make sure you don't leave anything to chance," Williams said of his advice to Parks.
"Talk directly to who you need to talk directly to, and don't leave anything for chance to be miscommunicated, misunderstood. 'Cause that happens all the time," he added.
Parks' decision had come as a shock given his role in TNT. The former National University standout emerged as a Best Player of the Conference candidate after last year's All-Filipino Cup, where he averaged 22.4 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 1.5 steals in 17 games.
An injury kept him from playing in the finals, however, and TNT bowed to Barangay Ginebra in five games.
"I hope they can mend fences and work something out, because he's a great teammate, he's an amazing player, and he would only help the cause on what we're trying to do this year," Williams said of Parks.