LOS ANGELES – He launched a shoe line in Southern California on Friday night. But Chandler Parsons was more than happy when Sunday came around and he was able to do what he’s been anxiously waiting to do for a long, long time.
Re-launch his NBA career.
Playing for the first time since suffering the first major injury of his NBA career during last April’s first-round playoff series against the Houston Rockets, Parsons played 12 rusty minutes during Sunday’s 103-93 triumph over the Los Angeles Lakers. But just the fact that he was able to play – six months to the day – since he had hybrid micro-fracture surgery to repair cartilage damage to his right knee, was good enough for Parsons.
"I’m so excited,’’ Parsons said. "I felt like it was my first game of my career, so that’s awesome just to be out there and compete and play.
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"I’ve never had to miss this amount of time. I’ve been chomping at the bit, watching a lot of film, lifting (weights), and to just kind of put it all together and be able to play out there was awesome.’’
Parsons’ shooting performance was sporadic at best. But he hit the boards hard, found some open teammates and was energetic while playing in just the first half.
Overall, Parsons finished with two points, three rebounds, three assists and one steal, and was 1-of-6 from the field.
"He did well physically,’’ coach Rick Carlisle said. "He’s chomping at the bit to play more, but this is going to be a gradual process and it was a good beginning.’’
For Parsons, it was frustrating that his brain is more than prepared to do what his body is incapable of doing at this point.
"It’s something I’ve never had to do before or deal with,’’ Parsons said. "I’m sure I’ll get used to it as time goes on, and I’m going to butt heads with the coaches and trainers in letting me play more, but that’s part of it.
"I’ll be responsible and be a pro about it. But I’m going to work my tail off and make sure I’m back to 100 percent and continue to get better and be a leader on this team.’’
Forward Dirk Nowitzki, who scored a game-high 25 points and grabbed nine rebounds against the Lakers, knows the Mavs are a much more efficient team with Parsons on the court.
"It was good to see him out there,’’ said Nowitzki, who was 10-of-13 from the field. "It’s going to be a work in progress for awhile and he’s going to have on his conditioning.
"You can run up and down the court as many times as you want, but once a guy is grinding and leaning on you and pushing you, it’s a whole different ballgame. A couple of passes he made -- the way he got to the basket a couple of times – he’s going to help us tremendously.’’
Parsons is totally aware that his conditioning is not where he wants it to be. Still, he wants to be on the court and contributing in whatever capacity he can.
"You can do all the conditioning you can, the pool and the treadmill and everything, but you can’t ever assimilate a game,’’ Parsons said. "It’s going to take some time, but the good thing is my knee felt fine.
"Obviously, I could have kept playing. But it’s going to be like this for a bit.’’
For how long? Parsons doesn’t know.
However, he has what he hopes is a full-proof plan.
"I’m not sure how long I’ll be on this minutes restrictions, but it’s going to be awhile,’’ Parsons said. "My job is to keep doing everything I can in my power to have no setbacks and have no swelling.’’
Dwain Price can be heard every Wednesday from 3-4 p.m. on dfwiradio.com.