I went to bed last night, as I typically do, around 11:30 central standard time. I knew I’d awaken to the news that Chandler Parsons had signed the offer sheet extended to him by the Dallas Mavericks yesterday afternoon. Instead, I was rudely greeted by this pic of Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, with Parsons, retweeted by just about everyone I knew:
Chandler Parsons’ offer from the Dallas Mavericks wasn’t the only surprising Rockets-related news of the day: Jason Friedman announced today he would no longer be with the team following this week.
We teamed up on numerous collaborations over the years (here and here, and I could’ve sworn there were one or two others but I can’t seem to find them), but I will always remember Jason in association with this post, written back in 2010 on my first day with Toyota Center media credentials. The phrase “showed me the ropes” is often thrown around by young writers/reporters. That person for me is Jason Friedman. I still remember stepping foot into the Houston Rockets lockerroom for the first time while Jason explained pre-game availability procedure. Not a single word that came out of his mouth registered – Yao Ming, in all his majestic glory, was sitting just a few feet in front of me. A week later, I emailed Friedman with the query “WAIT WE’RE ALLOWED TO GO INTO THE VISITORS TOO?!?”
I’m a lawyer by profession – I never went to journalism school. But Jason taught me the little things one wishes they knew before being thrown into the fire. When and where the coach speaks before the game, how to approach a player, why you should avoid Terrence Williams (okay, I learned that on my own).
Friedman lost a lot of the creative freedom he had previously enjoyed towards the end of his time with the team. That quickly became clear after his monster weekly roundups, replete with advanced stats, stopped appearing on the team’s web site. This was a loss to anyone following the team, even those like myself who also covered it. I admit to having just read Jason’s recaps numerous times when I didn’t have the time to dig into the numbers for myself. The behind-the-scenes video breakdowns he’d compile regularly some months back were pure cocaine for a Rockets junkie. Now, we’re losing his coverage altogether.
I don’t know what the future holds for Jason, but I wish him the best, and I hope for all of our sake, the team can find a passable replacement. I wouldn’t bet on it.
I will resume coverage of the Chandler Parsons situation tomorrow morning.
What a bizarre, bizarre free agency it has been, even in the wake of a summer that saw Dwight Howard claim he had received divine inspiration during a weekend retreat to Aspen steering him toward the Houston Rockets. When we last left off, the team had lost Kyle Lowry to the homecourt Raptors, lost serious momentum in the Carmelo Anthony chase, and put in a call to the agent of the game’s greatest player. Now it seems the Houston Rockets have fully turned their attention toward one Christopher Bosh, with sources indicating they had “intensified their pursuit” of the All-Star power forward. If you’re thinking this story seems vaguely familiar, your memory has served correct – the last go-around involved an iPad.