Early in 2021 NBA Free Agency, Phoenix Suns fans had high hopes that four-time All-Star Paul Millsap would sign on to give the Suns some much-needed rebounding and defense at the forward position.
But the 35-year old Millsap, in the midst of a steep career decline, had other plans. Instead of getting quality money and role with a Finals team in Phoenix, he decided to take the league minimum to sign with title hopeful Brooklyn Nets instead.
Free agent Paul Millsap has agreed to a deal with the Brooklyn Nets, his agent DeAngelo Simmons told @TheAthletic @Stadium.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) September 2, 2021
In doing so, the Nets and Nuggets effectively traded Jeff Green for Paul Millsap, since Jeff Green had already taken a one-year deal with the Nuggets to replace Millsap.
In 2020-21, Millsap posted his lowest numbers in at least a dozen years in many categories including points, rebounds and minutes played.
Against the Suns in the second round of the 2021 Playoffs, the 35-year old Millsap appeared in 3 of 4 games, all losses, averaging only 10 minutes with 6.7 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists — all career lows in the playoffs by a wide margin.
Good luck with that career revival in Brooklyn, Paul. It certainly worked for Blake Griffin, who posted career lows in minutes, scoring, and rebounding after joining the Nets but somehow was widely credited with a rebirth because he made some unexpected threes (career high 38% on 3 per game) and threw down a couple dunks.
I shouldn’t be annoyed that the Suns still can’t get these kinds of reclamation projects to beg for a job in Phoenix. I am, but I shouldn’t be.