Mavs' Parsons out against Warriors with right knee swelling
DALLAS (AP) Mavericks forward Chandler Parsons will miss Saturday night's game against NBA-leading Golden State with swelling in his right knee, raising questions about his health just two weeks before the playoffs.
Coach Rick Carlisle says Parsons sustained the injury in a loss at Indiana last Sunday. He scored 22 points in a win over Oklahoma City the next game and started against Houston on Thursday before leaving in the third quarter.
Carlisle didn't offer a timeframe for Parsons' return, but says he isn't concerned about a long-term injury. Dallas is likely to be the seventh seed in the Western Conference, with Houston or Memphis the probable first-round opponent.
''We believe that it's something that can get resolved, but that's all I can tell you right now,'' Carlisle said.
Parsons, who will be replaced in the starting lineup by Richard Jefferson, is third on the team with 15.7 points per game after signing a $46 million, three-year offer sheet that Houston declined to match. The versatile small forward who also averages 4.9 rebounds and 2.4 assists missed seven games in February and March with a left ankle sprain.
The Mavericks have had all the top players in their rotation available just four times in 21 games since adding Amare Stoudemire after the former All-Star was waived by New York. In two of those games, a player left early with an injury.
''It makes it more challenging,'' Carlisle said. ''You've got to deal with and be ready to absorb injuries. There are other teams that have had it a lot worse.''
Dallas will get a rare three-day break without having to travel before the next game Wednesday at home against Phoenix. That's part of the reason Carlisle is hopeful Parsons won't be out for long.
Parsons struggled to find his role early in his first season with the Mavericks, but his shooting percentage is up considerably since the All-Star break, and he's had several big games.
Even after his latest injury, Parsons had one of his biggest baskets since joining Dallas with a fadeaway jumper for a three-point lead late in the win over the Thunder.
That victory made it unlikely the Mavericks will fall to the No. 8 seed and have to face the Warriors in the first round. Dallas can clinch a 14th playoff trip in 15 seasons with a win against Golden State and a New Orleans loss in Portland.
''It's not ideal having one of your better players missing games at this point,'' Carlisle said. ''We concern ourselves with both the short- and long-term health of all of our guys. You can't mess around or take chances with this.''