Report: Rockets will not pick up Chandler Parsons’ player option, he’ll be restricted free agent

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This is another move that is about getting cap space to chase Carmelo Anthony (and maybe LeBron James or Chris Bosh or Kevin Love or any other big name free agents).

As expected, the Houston Rockets will not pick up the player option for Chandler Parsons, reports Marc Spears at Yahoo Sports. Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle says per the team’s usual “wait to the deadline” policy the Rockets will not make that official until Monday.

Still, it’s going to happen.

If the Rockets had picked it up they could have gotten Parsons to play for them at just $964,750 — a complete bargain. However, at the end of next season he would have been an unrestricted free agent and just bolted. By declining the option now his cap hold goes up some (to $2.9 million, because he met starter criteria), but the Rockets have the right to match any offer, plus it makes him a very valuable sign-and-trade piece to help get a free agent.

Parsons is going to cost the Rockets now if they do try to keep the athletic swingman — another team is going to come in with a big offer, very possibly an eight figure offer, and the Rockets will have to match (and go over the cap to do it). Parsons is going to get paid.

Parsons averaged 16.6 points a game with a true shooting percentage of 56.5 percent plus he grabbed 5.5 rebounds a contest playing almost 38 minutes a game. He’s athletic, can finish around the rim and shot 37 percent from three. He had a PER of 15.9 and is improving each year. He is going to draw a lot of interest.

But the Rockets are big game hunting and looking for all the leverage they can get.