According to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, NBA veteran Paul Millsap has inked a new deal with the Brooklyn Nets.
The Chicago Bulls, Los Angeles Clippers, and Golden State Warriors were all said to be on Millsap’s radar, but it was not to be:
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) September 2, 2021
The Bulls seemed to be right in the mix for Millsap over the past few days. Arturas Karnisovas worked with the big man in Denver, and the organization had arguably the most potential money to offer him with the bi-annual exception still at their disposal (not to mention, a $5.3 million trade exception). However, considering Millsap’s longevity, it was always going to be tough to pry him away from a true contender. Brooklyn is undoubtedly a favorite to walk away with the championship this season, and the allure of finally putting a ring on your finger might as well be priceless for a 15-year vet.
So … now what? Millsap not only fit what this team needed well, but he was one of the most proven talents left on the free-agent board. Maybe a player like Rondae Hollis-Jefferson enters the picture as a defensive-minded 14th man or perhaps a long-time role player like Mike Scott? I guess we also should not forget that James Ennis was mentioned alongside Millsap as a potential target for this front office. Ennis would be another wing option, but he does possess the size and versatility to guard multiple positions.
No matter the case, I expect we will see plenty of small-ball play from this squad this season. Derrick Jones Jr. has the length and athleticism to eat minutes at the position, and I also anticipate we will see DeMar DeRozan staggered into the second unit to fill a need. After all, someone from the starting group is likely going to have to play with the bench guys to keep the offense going, and DeRozan clocked 69 percent (nice) of his minutes at power forward last season, per Cleaning the Glass (by far a career-high).
Training camp starts at the end of the month, so I’m sure the front office wants to finalize this new-look roster sooner than later.