Zeroing in on Slaughter & Parks

By Al S. Mendoza

 

GREG Slaughter left first before saying he was on sabbatical (leave of absence aka vacation).

That was stepping on the line.

You leave without saying goodbye—that’s being unprofessional, period.

He put Ginebra San Miguel on cliff’s edge.

Wasn’t Ginebra contending strongly for the PBA Philippine Cup crown when Slaughter went AWOL (Absent Without Leave)?

Slaughter left a void with his departure.

The rumor mill said he left for the United States hurting because he learned of an impending trade.  Obviously, he didn’t want to leave Ginebra.

But despite the slight, Ginebra management didn’t raise a fuss.

Alfrancis Chua, the San Miguel Corp. athletic director, just let the Slaughter issue go—momentarily.  The back burner has room for it.

Ginebra is one of SMC’s three teams in the PBA, the other two being Magnolia and San Miguel Beer.

And then Ginebra won the championship at the Clark bubble—without Slaughter.

That’s big deal.  Slaughter, at 7 feet, abandoned a role as crucial as a vaccine’s against the COVID-19 pandemic.

Amid the euphoria brought by Ginebra’s victory, Slaughter came back.  Oozing with apology.

When you are in rejoice mode, it is easiest to forgive.

Slaughter made amends and vowed to be a dutiful Ginebra King again.

But, lo and behold, just days after renewing his contract with Ginebra, Slaughter saw himself being shipped to NorthPort.

Was it Ginebra management’s sweet revenge?

You can call it that.

But some pundits say it was a master’s stroke.  Masterpiece.  If it were chess, it was a checkmate—in just one move.

The trade netted Ginebra Christian Standhardinger, the versatile 6-foot-8 Fil-German, in a one-on-one deal.

Slaughter might have felt sideswiped, blind-sided, but that’s how the cookie crumbles in the league.

Raising hell was no option.  He has to abide as all trade rules had been followed to the letter.

It might taste like a bitter pill to swallow.

But it was a swap as legitimate as the people’s protest against the military takeover in Myanmar.

It can be defended all the way to Plaza Miranda.

Not quite long after this, Ray Parks Jr. grabs the spotlight himself trying to do a Slaughter—but, alas, crudely done.

Parks left TNT KaTropa, also citing a sabbatical to the US.

But he was caught lying as MVP, the TNT owner, showed social media photos of Parks “enjoying himself with a friend on a beach” in the Philippines.

PBA Chairman Ricky Vargas, also the TNT governor, said “management is pissed off.  Parks has a character flaw.”

If I know Vargas, he’d make Parks pay dearly for his indiscretion.

“We’ve given him the maximum salary contract and this is how he’d repay us?” said Vargas.

No doubt that Parks, the son of the late seven-time PBA best import awardee Bobby Parks, is super talented.

But if he doesn’t behave, he could be doomed.

Skill is one thing, attitude is another.

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