After the Denver Nuggets were eliminated by the Los Angeles Lakers in the 2020 Playoffs, rumors have started to swirl around veteran power forward Paul Millsap and his future with the team. After three seasons playing in Denver, Millsap is set to become an unrestricted free agent this fall. With his contribution to the team’s success in past seasons, it’s not surprising that the Nuggets have expressed their desire to keep him in Denver.
In a recent interview with Mike Singer of The Denver Post, Nuggets President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly thanked Millsap for the things that he brought to the team and said that he wanted to see him retire wearing a Nuggets jersey. It’s definitely a good thing for Millsap that despite his age and deteriorating performance, the Nuggets still want him back on their roster. However, according to a source who spoke to Singer, Millsap remains undecided on whether he will ink a new deal with the Nuggets or take his talent somewhere else in the 2020 free agency.
“Millsap hasn’t made any decisions yet, according to a person with knowledge of his thinking, and he’s still processing the 83 days the Nuggets spent confined inside the Orlando bubble. Millsap has heard the refrain about retiring as a Nugget before. It’s something to consider as he weighs his options. What will most impact his decision about remaining in Denver, though, is what other offers come his way. Does another contending team give him an offer in the $10 million to $12 million range annually to bring his veteran savvy and defensive presence to a different locker room?”
Connelly may have expressed his desire to re-sign Millsap, but it remains a big question mark if they are willing to spend a huge amount of money to keep the 35-year-old big man on their roster. If they lowball the player, it is highly likely that he would consider entertaining offers from other contenders that are in dire need of a frontcourt boost and a veteran presence in their locker room.
Another factor that could affect Millsap’s decision is Jeremy Grant, who is expected to opt out of his contract and test the free agency market this fall. With Grant being a better fit to the timeline of Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray, re-signing him will be Denver’s No. 1 priority in the 2020 offseason. Even if they succeed in bringing both big men back to the fold, there’s a strong chance that Millsap would be forced to surrender his spot in the starting lineup to Grant in the 2020-21 NBA season.
Though he’s already on the downside of his career, Millsap is still expected to receive plenty of interest. Some of his potential suitors include the Golden State Warriors, Boston Celtics, and the Miami Heat.