Atlanta Hawks’ Chandler Parsons Hires Personal Injury Firm After Car Accident With Alleged Drunk Driver
Chandler Parsons of the National Basketball Association’s (NBA) Atlanta Hawks has hired a personal injury law firm following a January 15 car accident that left him with multiple serious injuries. Said injuries, which the law firm claims could be potentially career ending for the basketball forward, include a herniated disc, torn labrum, and traumatic brain injury.
Attorneys John Morgan and Nick Panagakis of the Morgan & Morgan firm issued a statement confirming they will represent Parsons in a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver involved in the accident, who was charged with Driving Under the Influence (DUI).
According to the police report obtained by the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, the three-car crash occurred at approximately 2 p.m. at a busy intersection in Atlanta’s Brookhaven neighborhood. A police officer reportedly observed the at-fault driver make a left turn into oncoming traffic. The driver was knocked unconscious during the accident, but later admitted to authorities that he had been drinking earlier in the day. The report also indicates that a soda bottle with alcohol was found inside the car, and that police observed a heavy odor of alcohol both in the car and on the driver.
In addition to DUI, the driver was cited for failure to yield while turning left. The report indicates that Parsons and another driver involved in the accident were found to not be at fault.
The pending personal injury lawsuit will likely center on the at-fault driver’s negligence having caused injuries that prevent Parsons from continuing his basketball career. In a statement, attorneys John Morgan and Nick Panagakis said that, while Parsons was in “peak physical condition” prior to the wreck, the incident had “potentially end[ed] Mr. Parsons’ career as a professional athlete.”
“Chandler is having a difficult time accepting the consequences of the defendant’s reckless conduct on the roadway…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,” the statement said.
According to the police report, Parsons was advised of having sustained injuries to his back, neck, and head, but declined to be transported to a hospital.
Parsons has not played or practiced since the accident. The Hawks initially listed Parsons as injured with a concussion and whiplash, and he was placed in the NBA’s “concussion protocol,” which requires an evaluation by a physician before returning to play. On Monday, the Hawks updated the injury report to include the associated disc injury consistent with the statement from Morgan & Morgan.
Parsons’ current contract will pay him $25.1 million this year. He will be eligible to be a free agent at the end of the season, and will turn 32-years-old in October. If the injuries are indeed career ending and the lawsuit eventually goes to trial, such factors will have to be weighed when determining tort damages including the value of Parsons’ future earnings.