If the rivalry between the Houston Rockets and Dallas Mavericks weren’t already strong enough, it just got even more interesting following Chandler Parsons signing with Dallas and the war of words that ensued.
First off, let’s start with Parsons, who says he was offended by Houston’s public search for a “third star” when he felt he was the guy who could complement Dwight Howard and James Harden. Then you have Howard, who said Parsons’ departure would not affect the team.
And the latest comes from Harden, who said he and Howard are the real key pieces for the Rockets, and that the rest of the pieces are more insignificant.
“Dwight (Howard) and I are the cornerstones of the Rockets,” Harden said in comments to The Philippine Star. “The rest of the guys are role players or pieces that complete our team. We’ve lost some pieces and added some pieces. I think we’ll be fine next season.”
That comment from Harden was in reference to the team losing Parsons, Omer Asik and Jeremy Lin this offseason.
Lin was not offended by the comments.
“I agree (with Harden),” Lin said Thursday via Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle. “He didn’t mean that in any derogatory way. He and Dwight are the cornerstones of the Rockets.”
Parsons, however, did not take the remarks well.
“That’s a pretty ridiculous statement, if he meant that,” Parsons said in an interview with Jay Mohr. “And that’s part of the reason why I wanted to go to Dallas. I’m ready for the next step, I’m ready for a bigger role and I’m ready for more leadership. If anybody should understand it should be James, because he was in same situation in Oklahoma City and then he got the chance to come to Houston and shine.”
Parsons does say he has a lot of respect for the Rockets and that there are no hard feelings. He also appreciates that the team let him out of his contract a year early to get that restricted free agent money.
Are Howard and Harden right about their comments? Obviously Houston didn’t feel Parsons was a necessity, otherwise they would have matched his contract. They were off pursuing bigger things like Chris Bosh and Carmelo Anthony. We’ll learn in time whether the Rockets made a mistake by letting Parsons go, but I think they made the correct choice. Dallas gave him too much money.