Dallas Mavericks

Parsons scores 14 points in solid debut with Mavericks

One person who is glad Chandler Parsons finally hit the NBA jackpot is Houston Rockets coach Kevin McHale.

Parsons complained about the lack of money he made during his first three NBA seasons. However, in July the Dallas Mavericks signed the versatile small forward to a three-year, $46 million contract — a contract that can make Parsons and his family financially secure for a long, long time.

“I’m glad he’s got it,” McHale said Tuesday. “I’m sure he’ll settle down and not be talking about money all the time. He was killing me when he was talking about money all the time. He’s got enough of it now.”

In Tuesday’s preseason opener against the Rockets at American Airlines Center, Parsons scored 14 points, all in the first half. However, it wasn’t enough as the Rockets won 111-108.

Kostas Papanikolaou made three free throws with 0.2 seconds left to give the Rockets the victory. The free throws came after Jae Crowder was whistled for a foul while closely guarding Papanikolaou behind the 3-point line and ended a very long night.

The teams combined for 81 fouls, including 45 by the Rockets. And each team committed 24 turnovers.

Parsons, meanwhile, was effective, making 2 of 4 shots from 3-point range and seemed at ease with his new teammates.

“I thought Chandler got better every year,” McHale said. “Good playmaker, good off the dribble, shoots that line-drive jumper — just good enough — it goes in every once in a while.

“I just think he had a good all-around game, his playmaking, ability to drive and kick, likes taking big shots. There’s a lot of stuff you’ll miss.”

Although he enjoyed his three seasons with the Rockets, Parsons is fitting in with the Mavs.

“The organization has been so welcoming. The city, and the fans, everyone has been tremendous,” he said. “As far as the guys on the team, its such high-character guys in the locker room.

“We have so many good vets that are great resources that you can rely on that have been through a little bit of everything. It’s been unbelievable and I’m extremely happy.”

Defensive focus

If the Mavs plan on making a deep run in the playoffs, coach Rick Carlisle knows one important ingredient must be part of the championship recipe.

“We know that to be as good a team as we can be, we’ve got to get into the top 10 in defense somehow,” Carlisle said. “And that’s going to be challenging.

“On paper right now we’re somewhere in the middle of the pack if you just go on individual analytics, so we’ve got to develop a chemistry and commitment to that end of the ball, and I believe that we can do it. I don’t see it happening overnight, but we’ve got pieces that fit and we’ve just got to stay healthy and stay committed and we’ll have a chance.’’


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