Could Paul Millsap sit out start of season until right team, role presents itself?
J.J. Redick has already said he expects to start the coming NBA season at home, joining a contending team midseason (specifically, the New York resident is waiting for the right Nets, or maybe Knicks, offer).Could Paul Millsap be using the same playbook? Some around the league think so, reports Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report.
After a down year in Denver, where the veteran saw his lowest minutes per game since his sophomore campaign in 2007-08, Millsap is said to be seeking a crystalized role on a team with deep playoff aspirations. “I think he just wants to know he’s the third big or the reserve, small-ball 5 for a good team,” one assistant general manager told B/R...
At present, there’s an expectation among league executives that Millsap could ride out an extended offseason, resting his legs after Denver’s run to the 2020 Western Conference Finals and the subsequent sprint that was the 2020-21 campaign...
“I think he’s gonna be a minimum or a midseason guy,” said one veteran front office voice. “What’s the rush? The money wouldn’t get much better, and he can just pick his team. What if New Orleans is really good come January? What happens when some guy gets hurt, and that team starts scrambling for a replacement? He can pick his spot.”
Paul Millsap is the best free agent on the board (Lauri Markkanen might argue that), a player who can still defend at age 36, hit 34.3% from 3 last season, is strong on the glass, and averaged 9 points and 4.7 rebounds a game last season in Denver. He is also a strong veteran presence in the locker room. A lot of teams could use him.
At this point, waiting into the season seems the wise play for Millsap. The Nets don’t have an open roster spot. Minnesota is interested but not a contender. The Lakers are a contender but can only offer the veteran minimum; the Warriors have interest but financially are in the same place as L.A. Why should Millsap take that offer now over December or January, when he may have more options? Besides, what veteran wants to go through training camp?