Mavericks lose Parsons and possibly Rondo for rest of the NBA playoffs

By Schuyler Dixon


DALLAS _ The Dallas Mavericks, down 0-2 to Houston in their first-round playoff series, will be without Chandler Parsons for the rest of the season because of a right knee injury.

The Mavericks may be without Rajon Rondo, too.

Dallas said Wednesday that Parsons is looking at surgery options. He didn’t play in Tuesday night’s Game 2 loss.

The Mavericks also said Rondo sustained a back injury in Game 2, “is out indefinitely and is seeking additional medical opinions.”

Rondo sat for all but the first 34 seconds of the second half.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.

Rajon Rondo’s first run-in with Rick Carlisle ended with player and coach both saying they needed to communicate better to make things work for the Mavericks.

They don’t seem to be making any progress, and now they’re running out of time.

Rondo sat for all but the first 34 seconds of the second half Tuesday night as Dallas lost 111-99 loss to Houston to end up in an 0-2 hole in the first-round series. Game 3 is Friday night in Dallas.

The four-time All-Star was pulled after fouling James Harden twice early in the third quarter, leaving him with four fouls. While Carlisle could have hidden behind foul trouble as the reason for yet another ineffective game from the player acquired in a trade with Boston to try to boost Dallas’ playoff prospects, the coach changed everything by leaving Rondo on the bench for good.

The two quick fouls were puzzling, but paled compared to Rondo inexplicably getting called for an eight-second backcourt violation while walking the ball up the court in the first half. He was whistled for a technical foul later in the first half for complaining about another of his fouls on Harden.

“You can ask him that question,” Carlisle said after the game when asked about the effort of Rondo, who refused to talk to reporters on his way out of the locker room.

Owner Mark Cuban isn’t interested in addressing the apparently deteriorating relationship either, declining comment Wednesday. Players were off and unavailable to reporters.

The Mavericks got Rondo in a trade last December with Boston, where he won a championship in 2008 and returned to the NBA Finals two years later. They were hoping to get the player who has 10 career triple-doubles in the post-season.

Instead, Dallas ended up with a bad fit for an offence that has regressed after being among the league’s best. The stress of trying to make it work peaked when Rondo and Carlisle yelled obscenities at each other heading into a timeout against Toronto in February. The team suspended Rondo for a game.

Carlisle has praised Rondo since then, and as recently as the day before Game 2 when he said his point guard has been “playing really good basketball for the last month.”

But with the Mavericks leading early in the fourth quarter and backup Devin Harris unavailable because of a toe injury, Carlisle still didn’t go back to Rondo. J.J. Barea, who scored 13 points, and seldom-used Raymond Felton were his choices.

“I don’t make decisions out there,” Mavs star Dirk Nowitzki said. “I thought Ray had some good stretches throughout the game, gave us a lift off the bench. I thought J.J. gave us a lift in the first half. I guess that’s what coach rolled with.”

Rondo is set to be a free agent for the first time this summer, and Kobe Bryant has been vocal about him joining the Los Angeles Lakers.

When he was introduced to the Dallas media, Rondo said he was open to re-signing with the Mavericks. Cuban said he wouldn’t have done the deal if he didn’t think Dallas could lock him up long term.

Four months later, things might have changed.

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