Mar 27, 2014; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard (12) and forward Chandler Parsons (25) celebrate after a play during the second quarter against the Philadelphia 76ers at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
Recently, Dwight Howard made a comment suggesting Houston won’t be affected by Chandler Parsons’ absence next season. Parsons, who signed a 3 year, $46 million deal with the Dallas Mavericks, responded to Howard’s thought on the Jim Rome Show Wednesday (via JimRome.com):
“I know he didn’t mean it. He’s one of my closest friends,” said Parsons. “He’s got to be confident with the Rockets moving forward with or without me there, so I understand where he’s coming from. I think it’s a ridiculous statement, but at the end of the day, he has to stick up for the Rockets and I don’t think he meant it in a bad way and didn’t try to bash me at all.”
Instead of taking it personally, Parsons is displaying maturity by showing he understands what Howard’s expressing. All Dwight meant by his comment was that the Rockets are prepared to compete without Chandler. Rather than a slight at Parsons’ game, it was more a reflection of Houston’s mindset moving forward.
As far as Howard’s comment serving as a “ridiculous statement” goes, Chandler is correct by making this claim. While the Rockets acquired a solid replacement for him in Trevor Ariza, losing Parsons will have it’s impact – particularly on the offensive end.
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Ariza will bring better defense than Parsons, but offensively the same cannot be said. Sure, Trevor can hit open threes and score on the break, but when it comes to creating offense and making plays, Ariza just can’t get it done consistently. Chandler is exceptional in this regard, and the Rockets will miss a second playmaker alongside James Harden on the perimeter.
By adding Ariza, Parsons’ absence may not hurt them significantly. However, Houston will be affected offensively by the loss of the young small forward.
There’s no bad blood between Parsons and Howard. Dwight did the right thing by sticking up for his squad, and Chandler made the right statement by deeming Howard’s comment “ridiculous”.
Next time, Dwight just needs to word what he means differently. The way he speaks can create unnecessary drama from time to time, and this is just another example of this fact.