2 reasons the LA Clippers must sign forward Paul Millsap
The LA Clippers have reportedly expressed interest in free agent forward Paul Millsap. The addition of Millsap would cap off an offseason that included signing Kawhi Leonard, Reggie Jackson, Nicolas Batum, and Justise Winslow, as well as trading for Eric Bledsoe.
Teams like the Brooklyn Nets, Golden State Warriors, Chicago Bulls, and Los Angeles Lakers have also shown interest in the former Nuggets forward, and his decision remains up in the air. Here’s why the Clippers should go all in on Paul Millsap.
Having Paul Millsap join the Clippers would give the team some much-needed depth at the power forward and even the center positions. If there’s anything we learned about the Clippers in the last year, it’s that head coach Tyronn Lue isn’t afraid to think outside the box and play with new lineups.
We saw Ivica Zubac and Patrick Beverley benched in the first round of the 2021 playoffs in favor of Nicolas Batum’s speed and Reggie Jackson’s rim pressure. Lue then inserted both back into the starting lineup against the Utah Jazz and tinkered with lineups there as well.
All this to say that Millsap would be a valuable addition to the Clippers as a power forward or a center. During the 2018-19 and 2019-20 seasons with the Denver Nuggets, he led the Nuggets in net rating. His playing time during the 2020-21 season fluctuated as Nikola Jokic earned his first MVP award and the team focused on the development of Michael Porter Jr.
Millsap averaged 15.6 points, 8.1 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.6 steals, and 1.1 blocks per-36 minutes. Obviously, if he elects to join the Clippers, he wouldn’t have a large role, but he’d be able to help on both ends of the court in a limited capacity.
2. Veteran Leadership
Paul Millsap is a 15-year NBA veteran, who will be playing in his 16th NBA season when he signs with a team. He’s played for the Utah Jazz, Atlanta Hawks, and the Denver Nuggets, becoming a four-time All-Star in the process.
Millsap has also appeared in 129 playoff games across 12 NBA postseasons, ranking behind Kawhi Leonard’s 135 games and ahead of Paul George’s 108 games.
This year’s Clippers will feature seven players with at least 10 years of experience as well as six players with five or fewer years of experience, including three rookies. The 36-year old Millsap, who is set to turn 37 in February, would be the oldest player on the Clippers roster, if signed. Considering the fact the’s always been an exceptional locker room voice and leader, Millsap would fit right in with the rest of the Clippers roster.
At this stage in his career, it’s unclear whether Paul Millsap is looking for his best opportunity to win an NBA Championship or if he feels he can still play and help a team out on the court. Either way, the Clippers should pursue Millsap.