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Report: Rockets to decline option on Chandler Parsons, will be restricted free agent

Chandler Parsons (Sam Forencich/Getty Images) Chandler Parsons has expressed his desire to remain with the Rockets. (Sam Forencich/Getty Images)

The Rockets are planning to decline the fourth-year option on forward Chandler Parsons, which would make him a restricted free agent this summer, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports on Tuesday. Writes Wojnarowski:

"The Rockets hold a $960,000 option on the fourth and final year of Parsons' contract for the 2014-15 season, but want to avoid letting Parsons, 25, become an unrestricted free agent next summer. As a restricted free agent in July, the Rockets can match an offer sheet and retain Parsons on a long-term contract."

Parsons had his best seasons as a pro last year, averaging career highs in points (16.6), rebounds (5.5) and assists (4.0) per game. He was even better in the playoffs, averaging 19.3 points and 6.8 rebounds in Houston's six-game loss to the Trail Blazers.

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But the Rockets' goal is to clear the necessary salary cap space to go after a third maximum contract to team as a Big 3 with James Harden and Dwight Howard, Wojnarowski reports.

Candidates for that include LeBron James and Chris Bosh of the Heat, the Knicks' Carmelo Anthony and Dallas' Dirk Nowitzki, according to Wojnarowski. They are also reportedly interested in trading for Kevin Love of the Timberwolves.

Parsons could command $12 million to $13 million annually, Wojnarowski added, citing league executives.

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