Chandler Parsons ended up with the Mavericks this season, after signing a three-year offer sheet worth $46 million that Houston chose not to match.
Once Parsons was gone, the Rockets made some inflammatory comments about him on his way out the door — namely, that everyone but James Harden and Dwight Howard were role players on that team, and that the new deal Parsons signed would be “untradeable” in the future due to his level of production when compared to the value of the contract.
After struggling in his Dallas debut, Parsons has been playing as expected. But his Rockets replacement, Trevor Ariza, may be playing even better — and doing so at a far more palatable price.
Parsons had some tense public exchanges with prominent Rockets figures after his departure to Dallas. All has been forgiven now, but he took offense to comments from Houston general manager Daryl Morey and superstar James Harden that essentially classified Parsons as a role player who wasn’t worth the three-year, $46 million deal he received in restricted free agency.
Perhaps that explains why Parsons has little interest in discussing Trevor Ariza, his much more cap-friendly replacement on the Rockets who has been phenomenal in five games. Ariza is averaging 17.6 points, 5.4 rebounds, 3.2 assists and leads the NBA with 21 made 3-pointers, knocking down 60 percent of his long-range attempts.
“I don’t pay any attention to him,” Parsons said. “Listen, many people replace many people every year in this league. He’s a good, proven player in this league. He’s supposed to play good for them.”
Ariza’s contract is for four years and $32 million, which would be a bargain if (and that’s a big if) he can continue this level of production. But Houston doesn’t get too much credit, here, because of the way the team overpaid Ariza in free agency the first time around back in 2009, when the results were essentially the opposite of what we’re seeing now.
The fact remains, however, that both Parsons and the Rockets are doing just fine in their new situations. Just don’t expect either side to gleefully acknowledge that’s the case.