Chandler Parsons says he's healthy and 'dying to play', but claims Grizzlies won't let him return
From NBA media reports
Memphis Grizzlies forward Chandler Parsons spoke with the media on Saturday about his displeasure with how the Grizzlies have handled his recovery from injury.
Parsons told The Commercial Appeal that he has been medically cleared to return from the left knee injury that has sidelined him for the entire 2018-19 season. But despite his improved health, he says the Grizzlies haven’t given him a timetable for when he will return to the floor.
“The most confusing part for me is I’m healthy,” Parsons said to The Commercial Appeal. “I’m medically cleared by the people I work with every single day, that are experts at this kind of stuff, so it’s frustrating to watch a team struggle and I’m sitting there on the bench healthy, dying to play.”
Here’s more from Mark Giannotto of The Commercial Appeal on Parson’s disconnect with the Grizzlies’ front office:
Parsons and the Grizzlies medical staff targeted a Dec. 21 game at Sacramento as when he would return from the right knee soreness. His entire rehab process was geared toward returning on that date.
“Then they kind of put an end to that,” Parsons said.
The “they” here is Wallace and the Grizzlies’ front office, and it’s the source of all the tension from Parsons’ perspective.
Parsons confirmed that Wallace wanted to see him play five-on-five in practice, which Parsons said he’s done for two weeks now without feeling any lingering soreness in his knee. Parsons said Wallace also asked him to go down to the G-League “for a really long time, but didn’t tell me how long. Which also wasn’t going to happen.”
Parsons was willing to play a game or two in Southaven for the Memphis Hustle, but the scheduling didn’t work out because the Hustle weren’t in town.
“It’s just been a very unorganized schedule and still, to this day, there’s no set plan of when I’m going to return to play or anything like that,” Parsons said before elaborating on why he’s so frustrated by the situation.
“No communication. No nothing. I don’t think it’s from a basketball standpoint. It’s definitely not from a health standpoint. I’ve been cleared by the medical staff of our organization, and clearly it’s not about fitting. I already earned a starting spot out of training camp and have shown I can fit with the team. I think the confusion for me is there’s no communication about what’s going on and when I’m going to play.”
The 30-year-old forward has struggled with injuries since he signed a four-year, $94-million deal with the Grizzlies in 2016. In two-plus seasons with Memphis, Parsons is averaging 7.0 points on 40.2 percent shooting over 73 games.
“Look, I’m over here trying to help our team win in any way I can,” Parsons said to The Commercial Appeal. “I’m not a distraction. I get along with everybody on the team. I love the coaching staff. I love the medical staff. So it’s just confusing as to why I can’t play and help our team, who is clearly struggling and could use me right now. But yeah, I hope to salvage it. I hope to play as soon as possible and help our team win as many games as possible.”
The Grizzlies (18-17) will hit the road for their next game against the Houston Rockets on Monday (7 ET, NBA League Pass).