May 28 2009 Matthew Leslie
Rocks star Lewis-Parry to get on his wagon and hit the gold rush for NBA glory
Scottish Rocks ace Chi Lewis-Parry could be rubbing shoulders with basketball legends such as LeBron James and Kobe Bryant if he can impress NBA bosses.
The Londoner who joined the Rocks from Guildford Heat last summer will fly out to California next month after being offered a trial for NBA Western Conference side, Golden State Warriors.
Lewis-Parry's dream chance came 12 months ago after being spotted by a Warriors scout when playing in a Californian summer league and was told to get some BBL match action under his belt and come back in a year's time.
Now he is set to tread a path blazed by other Brits who have graced the world's biggest basketball stage such as Luol Deng, Pops Mensah-Bonsu and Paisley's own Robert Archibald.
He said: "I fly out to Oakland next month and I can't wait to get started.
"Even if they only take me on as a training player, I will be delighted because not only will it be a foot in the door but it will be an opportunity to learn from the best players in the best league.
"If I'm unsuccessful then so be it because I will have had a go and will always look back on my career saying, 'At least I tried' because the worst question anyone can ask themselves in life is, 'What if?'.
"I didn't want to be sitting in front of the telly in years to come watching the NBA and wondering if I could have been there.
"This whole thing came about off my own back because I'm a natural self-starter and if you want to get into the NBA scouts' radar, you have to go looking for it.
"I didn't want to be in front of the mirror doing a Marlon Brando and asking if I could have been a contender."
Lewis-Parry packed up his rucksack and landed himself a berth in the summer leagues and made an immediate impact.
He added: "I started off well but midway through last summer, I hit a purple patch and my points totals were hitting the high twenties.
"Word clearly reached someone at the Golden State Warriors and a guy from the club came down for a look.
"As it happened, the game he was at saw me rack up 29 points and he clearly liked what he saw.
"He said to me that in order to be in good nick for the trial period, it would be advisable to go back to the BBL and get a full season under my belt - which I did when I joined the Rocks."