Atlanta Hawks forward Chandler Parsons' NBA career may be over after he was injured in a drunk driving crash. Parsons was driving home from practice around 2 p.m. last week when he was struck by a drunk driver. The team initially downplayed the severity of his injuries, issuing a statement saying he suffered a concussion and whiplash.
It turns out, Parsons' injuries were more serious than initially thought, and they could force the 31-year-old into early retirement. His lawyers issued a statement saying that he suffered a traumatic brain injury, a herniated disc, and a torn labrum in the accident.
"Chandler is having a difficult time accepting the consequences of the defendant's reckless conduct on the roadway," his lawyers said. "Chandler was in peak physical condition at the time of the wreck. He is now working with a team of doctors to regain his health, and at this time, his ability to return to play is unclear. Our focus right now is on helping him make a full recovery, while we also work to hold any and all responsible parties fully accountable."
Officials have not identified the driver, but he was taken into custody and is facing DUI charges.
"The at-fault driver created utter chaos on the roadway, needlessly endangering the lives of countless motorists," Parsons' lawyers wrote. "He now stands charged with DUI, admitted drinking, had alcohol in the car with him, passed out after causing a three-car crash at 2:00 p.m. on a Wednesday in a busy intersection."
Parsons has been struggling to stay on the court amid chronic knee problems. He signed a four-year, $94.8 million deal with the Memphis Grizzlies in July 2016, but has played in just 100 games since then. He was traded to the Hawks over the summer but only played in five games before the accident.