At only 28 years old, Jabari Parker should only be hitting his prime in the NBA. But multiple devastating knee injuries have derailed his once-promising career in the best league in the world. Parker isn’t even in the NBA anymore, as he’s packed his bags and crossed the pond to continue his career in Europe as part of Barcelona.
Parker last appeared in an NBA game in the 2021-22 season with the Boston Celtics, playing in 12 games and recording just 4.4 points, 2.3 rebounds, and 0.5 assists averages.
Parker’s injuries and the decline of his play as a result of those health issues are clearly major reasons why he’s no longer in the NBA. But there’s more to that if you ask him. The former No. 2 overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft by the Milwaukee Bucks called out the NBA for nurturing a landscape that drives away veterans.
“I just want to be a part of something legitimate. I want to be a part of ‘every game matters’. Sadly, the NBA is a business and there are 10-12 teams that try to win every game and the other half try to get a Draft pick,” the former Duke Blue Devils star said in an interview with Eurohoops.
“Where does that leave good players? You either have to be super good or bad, to lose games. It’s no excuse to see DeMarcus Cousins, Dwight Howard, or John Wall, guys who are potentially going into the Hall of Fame… seeing those guys not have a job? We are seeing the league getting watered down, unfortunately. It’s a lot of things that are out of our control. Euroleague and the fans are expecting a lot, and we as players expect a lot from ourselves and we want to compete.”
Parker could have used better examples to support his case there because Cousins, Howard, and Wall are not on NBA rosters for the clear reason that they are all washed. The same can be said about Parker. However, Parker shouldn’t have a hard time finding people who would agree with his points.
Additionally, the 2022-23 NBA season was one of the most competitive in recent memory.