Thomas Campbell-US Presswire
The heart of the team, that’s what I think about when Chandler Parsons comes to mind. The Houston Rockets got the biggest steal of the draft when they took Parsons with the 38th overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft. How he fell to the second round I have no idea. But it changed everything the Rockets had planned.
Marcus Morris was supposed to be the guy to take over the starting small forward spot from Chase Budinger. But after a great training camp, Parsons took that spot away from Morris and was named the starter just a few games into the season.
Parsons had one of the best rookie seasons in 2011, averaging 9.5 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal in 28 minutes a game. He played in 63 of the possible 66 games in the lockout shortened season.
I think Parsons could have been a tad higher in the Player ratings. Maybe 75 or 76 would be more fitting as he continues to be underrated by the basketball world. Parsons is the heart and soul of the team and has already became great friends with the rookies and Jeremy Lin. He’s a very intelligent and nice guy that the fans love and if the Rockets organization is smart, they will keep him around for years to come.
I can see Parsons averaging 13-15 points, 5-7 rebounds, 2-3 assists and a steal a game next season. His role will be increased. He will definitely have to play more than 30 minutes a night. Like it or not, Parsons is the leader of this team right now. They may not win very many games next season, but if the team gives it 100 percent like Parsons does, they will be fine in the long run.
If Chandler continues to take a step forward next season I wouldn’t be surprised to see him rated in the 78-80 range for the next game. He’s that valuable and his numbers will increase on such a young and inexperienced team.