Mike Miller is officially back on the market. The Trail Blazers and the 35-year-old sharpshooter have agreed on a buyout, allowing Miller to enter free agency as NBA teams prepare to open training camp across the league. A report from Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports lists the Denver Nuggets as one of the teams interested in Miller's services.
Miller joined the Trail Blazers in July from the Cleveland Cavaliers, with Portland sending two future second-round picks to Cleveland for Brendan Haywood and Miller, creating two trade exceptions. The Trail Blazers waived Haywood shortly after finalizing the trade with Cleveland.
Miller is no spring chicken, but he was productive the year before last for the Memphis Grizzlies off the bench, shooting 45.9 percent on 3-pointers while playing 20 minutes per game. That season was good enough to draw the attention of Nuggets' general manager Tim Connelly, who reportedly offered Miller a 3-year, $12 million offer in free agency. Miller chose to play with LeBron James in Cleveland, but had a season ravaged by injuries and wasn't doing much of anything but cheering by the end of the season. He played 65 minutes in the playoffs, with appearances in the last five games of the Finals. At least he didn't get his soul crushed by Kawhi Leonard in that series.
If the Nuggets do reach an agreement with the 2001 Rookie of the Year, Miller could be the 15th guaranteed contract on the team, leaving Erick Green in an uncomfortable position as training camp begins. With Nick Johnson being the lone survivor of the Ty Lawson trade, Miller could fill the void created by waiving Kostas Papanikolaou.
Best case scenario, Miller's body adjusts to the Denver climate, he is a great veteran presence in the locker room, he teaches Emmanuel Mudiay how to properly accept the Rookie of the Year award and he averages a few minutes per game while helping add another body to the rotation at small forward. Worst case scenario, Miller is put in a situation where he has to play 20-25 minutes a game, there isn't enough Toradol in the world to numb Miller into a condition where he can play without experiencing pain, and the Nuggets second unit gets destroyed on defense and the boards.
Personally, I wouldn't mind seeing Miller sign with the Nuggets. Everybody he plays with loves him, and when LeBron enters free agency next year, he can help recruit him to sign with the Nuggets! Hey, a guy can dream.