Cherokee Parks (born October 11, 1972 in Huntington Beach, California) was drafted by the Dallas Mavericks in the first round of the 1995 NBA draft.
Parks, a McDonalds All-American coming out of high school, attended Duke University where he helped the Blue Devils to the NCAA National Championship as a freshman. His scoring average rose in each of his four seasons from 5.0 points per game his first year to 19.0 his senior season. He rebounds also increased in kind from 2.4 rebounds per game to 9.3 per game his final year.
A four-year letterman, Parks was named second team All-ACC and second team All-ACC tournament as a junior. That same year he led Duke back to the NCAA Finals where they lost the championship game to Arkansas.
His senior season he was again named second team All-ACC and was voted the team's co-MVP. He still ranks 21st all-time in points at Duke, 11th all-time in rebounds and fourth all-time in blocked shots.
The Mavericks drafted Parks twelfth overall in the first round of the 1995 draft. He played in 64 games for Dallas his rookie season and averaged 3.9 ppg and 3.4 rpg. He also posted his career-high in points as a Mav, scoring 25 on March 17, 1996 against Portland.
After the season, he was traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for the removal of the 2-6 lottery protection on the 1997 first-round draft choice the Mavericks acquired from the Timberwolves in the 1994 Sean Rooks trade.
Parks played two seasons in Minnesota enjoying his best offensive season in 1997-1998 when he averaged 7.1 ppg. From there the 6'11 center played two seasons in Vancouver, a year split between Washington and the Los Angeles Clippers and final full or partial season stints in San Antonio and back with the Clippers before finishing his career with 12 games for Golden State in 2003.
After his basketball career, Parks opened a club in Huntington Beach, California which he called The Brigg, a punk rock club. Later renamed the Blue Cafe, the club eventually closed.
In a somewhat surprising move (in August of 2011) a 38-year old Parks signed on with Aubenas of the French Basketball League.
Cherokee was named by his mother who selected the name after she found out his great-grandmother was a full-blood Cherokee.
Parks still gives back to Duke University and has returned to coach in Coach K's Basketball Academy during the summers.