Chandler Parsons gets fresh start with Hawks after three years of frustration

Chandler Parsons of the Memphis Grizzlies dribbles the ball against the Washington Wizards at Verizon Center on January 18, 2017 in Washington, DC.

Credit: Rob Carr

Combined ShapeCaption
Chandler Parsons of the Memphis Grizzlies dribbles the ball against the Washington Wizards at Verizon Center on January 18, 2017 in Washington, DC.

Credit: Rob Carr

Credit: Rob Carr

Chandler Parsons is searching for a new start – one he desperately wants after three knee surgeries in three years and three trips to Germany to seek experimental treatment on the troublesome joints.

He hopes it comes with the Hawks after a trade this week.

The Hawks acquired Parsons and his expiring contract, worth $25.1 million this season, from the Grizzlies for the expiring contracts of Miles Plumlee and Solomon Hill. Parsons was limited to just 95 games with the Grizzlies – 34, 36 and 25 each year – since he signed a four-year, $94 million contract.

“It’s unfortunate,” Parsons told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Saturday as he watched the Hawks in the Las Vegas Summer League. “No one wants to get hurt. Everyone wants to play. You see all the stuff off the court, your contract, but when you are not doing what you love, it hurts. The last three years have really taken a toll on me and it was frustrating. But at the same time, I still have a lot left. When I’m healthy, I’m still an efficient, good player in this league.”

Parsons, a 6-foot-10 small forward, watched his new team the day after meeting some members of management, the coaching staff and new teammates at a team dinner. The trade was officially announced on Sunday following the end of the NBA moratorium period.

Parsons said he just returned from Germany where he underwent a Regenokine program, the third time he has done so at it own expense. The program, not approved in the United States by the FDA, is described as blood spinning where anti-inflammatory proteins are drawn from a patient’s blood and re-injected into a problem joint. Kobe Bryant also underwent the procedure.

Parsons averaged 7.2 points per game in his time with the Grizzlies. However, he averaged 14 points each in three seasons with the Rockets and two seasons with the Mavericks. He has a career 3-point percentage of 37 percent, including near 40 percent in his five seasons before joining the Grizzlies.

“That really helps,” Parsons said of the treatments. “Starting to basically go full-go. I’ve been working out for a month or two. Feel good. Body feels good. Knees feel good. I’ll be ready to go.”

The Hawks made the trade for Parsons, in part, to free up a roster spot. They will have two available spots once two pending trades are complete and two rookies signed. However, Parsons also hopes to get a chance to play.

There are other benefits for Parsons. The Orlando native is now close to home. He knows head coach Lloyd Pierce and Melvin Hunt was an assistant coach in Dallas. The Hawks up-and-down style that encourages 3-pointers fits. Parsons is also the elder statesman on the Hawks roster as it currently stands. The 30-year old is two days older than the also recently acquired Evan Turner.

The Grizzlies tried to reach a buyout agreement last season and this offseason with Parsons but the talks never ultimately successful. Parsons said he heard the Hawks were interested several weeks ago but didn’t know for sure until the deal was reached.

“So excited,” Parsons said. “Just to have a fresh start with an organization like the Hawks is incredible to me. The young core that they have is really something special. I’ve seen if from afar. When you look at the depth they have and the age that these kids are, it’s impressive. Hopefully, we can keep these guys together for a long time. They have a chance. I’m excited to come and help anyway possible – lead these young guys, try to stay healthy and contribute any way I can this last year and we’ll see what happens.”

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