Milwaukee Bucks: Risk and reward of a potential Jabari Parker contract extension

Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports /
3 of 5
Mandatory Credit: Steve Dykes-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Steve Dykes-USA TODAY Sports /


Unfortunately — troublesome as it is — defense is far from the biggest concern surrounding Jabari Parker. The elephant in the room in any talks involving an extension for Jabari is going to be his injury struggles.

Injuries are a part of the game. Each year a player goes down with an injury that derails or, in extreme cases, even finishes their career. Some of the names that come to mind from having suffered such injuries include Shaun Livingston, Grant Hill, and the Bucks’ very own Michael Redd.

Looking more specifically at Parker’s injury, players who have suffered multiple ACL injuries include Josh Howard, and the aformentioned Redd. Considering both were past 30 years of age at the time, the injuries effectively ended their careers and can’t easily be used as a measuring stick for Parker’s recovery.

A ray of light for Parker could be the recovery of San Antonio Spurs forward Davis Bertans. Still only 24 years old, the Latvian recovered from two torn ACLs early in his career in Europe and has since managed to make an impact in the NBA.

Granting Parker a big extension in the middle of the recovery process would certainly be a leap of faith, though.

The primary example of a player signing a long term deal and suffering a potential career changing injury is another former Simeon alumni, Derrick Rose. Prior to securing a long-term contract, Rose won the 2010-11 MVP. Rose signed a five-year extension for $94.3 million on Dec. 21, 2011.

The Chicago Bulls were contenders again as the talented, athletic point guard cut through and exploded over defenses on a regular basis.

Rose signed that extension with only minor injuries throughout his first three seasons in the NBA. In the playoffs of the lockout-shortened 2011-12 season, Rose suffered an ACL injury causing him to miss the entirety of the following season. In the following year, Rose suffered another major injury, tearing a meniscus in his knee and only playing 10 games.

Rose came back from injury, but has never really been the same explosive player that many expected to challenge LeBron James’ lengthy run of dominance in the East. A player who often relied on athleticism to score has since been caught relying on a shaky jump shot instead.

Rose went from MVP and franchise player to being traded away for rotation players.

Parker is faced with his second comeback from an ACL injury. The risks are obvious for a player coming back from a serious injury, and for that matter, two significant injuries like Derrick Rose had to before Jabari.

We may see a completely different Jabari Parker. Parker’s dunk attempts after finding a hole in the defense may be limited, along with the potential for less lift on his jump shot. The Bucks may see a different player come back into the lineup next year, and one that may not look like the Parker of the past three years.

If you’re a glass half empty kind of fan, the reasons to be concerned about how an extension for Parker would age are plentiful.