Knee surgery may end Chandler Parsons' season, Dallas' playoff hopes
If the season ended today, the Dallas Mavericks would face the Golden State Warriors in the first round of the playoffs. That's the good news.
Dallas has lost seven of its last 10 games, and is still relying on a 37-year-old Dirk Nowitzki to carry the offense. And things just got a whole lot worse.
Chandler Parsons, one of the team's best and most valuable players, is "likely" to have season-ending knee surgery this week (via ESPN):
Dallas Mavericks forward Chandler Parsons is likely to undergo season-ending surgery this week to address a torn meniscus in his right knee, sources told ESPN.com. Parsons, who sources say will receive a second opinion before scheduling an operation, is expected to be fully recovered in time to resume his regular offseason basketball workout routine.
Outside of the fact that Parsons is a critical member of the team -- and their chances of winning a playoff series go from 0.1 percent to 0.0 percent with him out -- he can also become an unrestricted free agent this summer if he opts out of his player option, which he's likely to do:
Sources said Parsons is still likely to exercise his right this summer to opt out of the final season of his three-year, $46 million deal. He is expected to receive maximum-contract offers in free agency, with sources considering the Mavs the frontrunners to keep him.
If he goes under the knife, this will also be the second straight year Parsons ends his season with knee surgery. Last May's hybrid microfracture procedure kept the 27-year-old out of commission and in rehab for a good chunk of this season, and he didn't really look like the same player until the middle of January.
His true shooting percentage since the All-Star break (63.5) is as good as Kevin Durant's been all season. (Only Steph Curry and J.J. Redick are higher.)
Knee surgery might be the two least attractive words when mentioning a prospective free agent's name, but Parsons should still draw serious interest on the open market. He's a 6-foot-10 wing who can handle the ball in transition, run a pick-and-roll, knock down threes, create his own shot, attack the basket and make plays for teammates.
Any organization that's looking to add a dynamic offensive weapon will have interest, and it will be a devastating blow for the Mavericks if they lose him.