Sunday, July 12, 2009

I suppose I need a Paul Millsap entry

I really don't want to get my Blazers blog certification revoked, so here is my required Millsap entry. The delay wasn't entirely due to my laziness this time around. Since the rumors first surfaced I have felt conflicted. It always seems like less fun to write about things that make you confused.

The deal can work. Adding Millsap to the bench would make Portland's already badass front court rotation even badassier. Millsap is talented, versatile, and fits perfectly with the roster age-wise. He would not, as I have heard many Portland fans claim, be simply a back-up power forward. Portland would not have offered that amount of money to him if that was all he could be. While he will not be the starter, he will get 30 minutes per game. We will see him sharing the court with many starters throughout the game.

I like point-forwards for the non-traditionalist spirit, and Millsap to Portland means we will see another novelty-rich concept I like to call the long-forward. That is what Rashard Lewis is in Orlando, what Rasheed has been after leaving Rip City, and what Nate McMillan will undoubtedly experiment with using LaMarcus Aldridge as with Millsap and Oden/Billa down low.

The conflict I feel over the proposal comes from the high cost and the fact that it will not at all address the most glaring team needs. Millsap in the rotation will not make it harder for teams to double Roy up top and sever the head of this offense. It will not give Portland another play maker on the perimeter.

Adding Millsap means Przybilla will become the second big off the bench if and when Oden is ready to start. Even if Joel hangs on to the starting job, his minutes will still have to be cut. This will reduce the role of a player who has proven to be very instrumental in producing wins. The case that the benefits Millsap will provide outweigh those provided by Joel is not hard to make. However, with more Millsap and less Billa Portland will be losing a long and capable defender of the rim. I'm not certain that Portland needs what Millsap brings more than they need what Przybilla has. (Also something to remember, this is already the best rebounding team in the League.)

Over the course of the next week Utah could decide to match Portland's "toxic" offer and none of this will matter. It is being widely reported that Utah is very much trying to trade Boozer to clear some cap space. Don't sleep on them sending Andre Kirilenko somewhere, either.


goonerluke said...

utah will match if they want to remain relevant. (they do)

my take: once it appeared that utah might bag 'sap very cheaply - think $6M/yr - the blazers decided to inflict a little pain on their division rival, knowing full well that it was always 90+% that Utah matches.

JackBrown said...

I like it, but I also wonder how wise it is to mess with other front offices like that. It seems like such things could have a negative effect on business relationships, which could limit options down the road.

Oh yeah, and nice to see you still out there Goonerluke.

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