Memphis Grizzlies head coach David Fizdale told reporters on Monday that forward Chandler Parsons will not be cleared to play in the team’s season opener. ESPN’s Tim MacMahon relayed the news.
Parsons underwent surgery during the offseason on a balky right knee that has plagued him in the past. It was the second procedure Parsons has had to undergo on the troublesome knee, which MacMahon reports was the primary reason his former team, the Dallas Mavericks, decided against pursuing him as a free agent over the summer. The first surgery was a microfracture operation, while he had his meniscus repaired in May.
Parsons began practicing for the first time last week with hopes of being cleared to play, but the Grizzlies are taking an understandably cautious approach with their new swingman. Memphis handed Parsons a four-year max deal worth $94 million in July.
In five NBA seasons to this point with the Mavs and Houston Rockets, Parsons has averaged 14.3 points, 5.1 boards and 2.8 assists. Memphis brought him in in an attempt to solidify its shooting and add athleticism on the wing. He’s a 38 percent career three-point shooter and connected on a career-best 41.4 percent of his triples last season with Dallas.
Fizdale also said that center Marc Gasol will be on a minutes restriction in the early part of the season. Gasol had his 2015-16 campaign cut short in February due to a broken right foot that eventually required surgery. The injury also forced him to miss the Summer Olympic Games in Rio. He sustained a bone bruise in the same foot during the preseason, but the team said it was unrelated to the previous issue.
The Grizzlies open the season against the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday night.