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Jabari Parker refutes strained relationship with Jason Kidd

Milwaukee Bucks forward Jabari Parker is nearing a return to the court for the first time in the 2017-18 NBA season. Also, for the first time in his young career, he will not be under the tutelage of former head coach Jason Kidd.

Parker had been tied to Kidd’s firing due to reports about their strained relationship. However, he dismissed the notion of any tension between his former head coach, according to Matt Velazquez of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

“With those reports, I take it that they are using me as a scapegoat,” Parker said at Menominee Nation Arena. “I’m not a threat right now, so they target me because I am an easy piece. With where my life is, I try to focus on myself. I have enough problems in trying to get back. That’s not me to put my energy to wish bad upon others.”

It has been a rough road to recovery for Parker after an injury-plagued start to his career. To make matters worse, he was unable to work out an extension with the Bucks, making him a restricted free agent at the end of the season.

That said, it seems Parker is more focused on coming back strong after suffering another torn ACL last year. There has been plenty of speculation regarding his future with the Bucks, especially with the emergence of their frontcourt led by star forward Giannis Antetokounmpo. Either way, the former second overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft is still likely to command plenty of attention despite his checkered injury history.