Paul Millsap, the do-it-all Power Forward, has been at the heart of a versatile Hawks team that has been looked at as the East Coast Spurs due to their style of play. Over the past couple years, Millsap has been a very underrated player in the league, and he has consistently stuffed the stat sheet for the Hawks.
Now, there’s the big topic of free agency looming in the very near future. When asked about his free agency plans, Millsap said that he wasn’t sure what he was going to do just yet. If he opts back in, there’s a nice $21 million paycheck. However, there could be a few teams that are on the cusp of being named serious championship contenders that he could put over the top. So, how about we take a look at three teams that should be monitoring this situation in case Millsap does decide to opt out.
The Pacers just had themselves a very nice offseason that included acquiring Thaddeus Young, Jeff Teague, and Al Jefferson. There’s already a superstar on the team in Paul George, and they have an up-and-coming center in Myles Turner. One team that has been high on everyone’s board is the Pacers, and adding a versatile, impactful player like Millsap could be the one to set them over the edge.
Thaddeus Young has played sixth man before when playing for Philadelphia, and having him coming off of the bench with Al Jefferson could be a very dynamic big man duo. Turner would also thrive on a starting squad with a guy like Paul Millsap as a mentor and frontcourt mate. Not to mention with the defensive abilities of George, Millsap, and Turner, this team would most likely be a top three defense in the league. Who wouldn’t want to see another PG13 vs LeBron matchup in the conference finals with a Paul Millsap kicker?
Everyone knows the drama that has surrounded the Rockets in the past couple seasons. Stories of playing with James Harden are also well documented. Now, Mike D’Antoni looks to flip the script from last season and decided to just roll with the obvious which is Harden at the point. Also, since Dwight Howard is now in Atlanta, the Rockets only have Clint Capela, Nene, and Ryan Anderson to rely on in the frontcourt.
Say they acquire the services of one Paul Millsap. An offensive lineup with Harden, Millsap, and Anderson would be absolutely lethal. Then, a defensive lineup with Capela, Millsap, Beverly, and Ariza would be one of the best defensive lineups Houston has seen in a while. Since Millsap can do a little of everything, he would alleviate some of the pressure on Harden to produce all of the time, and it would also make for a great pick and roll/pop.
Yes. I am definitely suggesting a Millsap/Horford reunion in Bean Town, and it could be glorious for the Boston fans. These two would go from one great coach in Mike Budenholzer, to another great coach in Brad Stevens. The success that they experienced in Atlanta can be traced back to the team’s defense, and the Celtics already have some of the best defensive guards in the league. Throw in two great, team defense oriented players, and they could finally lock down the paint against opposing big men.
Defense isn’t the only aspect of the Celtics game that would thrive with Millsap. Imagine the kind of offense a lineup containing Isaiah Thomas, Avery Bradley, Jae Crowder, Millsap, and Horford could produce. If more shooting is something that you’d like, then Olynyk could be subbed into play the five. This kind of free agent signing could vault the Celtics right back into championship contention like they were in the big three days.