It blows my mind when I hear a basketball fan say that they think Paul Millsap is over rated. Takes like that pop out of the woodwork whenever the Nuggets get clunky on offense end. Never mind that the man is playing one-handed, on a brand new team, with a brand new coach and without the benefit of practice. Never mind the fact that the Nuggets are significantly better with Millsap on the floor over the last month.
Millsap is a beast. He is the size of LeBron James and has a menacing scowl that could get anyone to soften their stance. I’ve been on the receiving end of that scowl myself a time or two this season when a question I’ve thrown his way has met his ire. I usually apologize and the retreat into the fetal position.
But his perfect build and intense stare hide an incredibly well-rounded and polished game. Millsap can shoot from outside, he can shoot form the mid-range, he’s got an incredible step back, he can post up, he can pass, and he can defend all five positions. He sometimes does defend all five positions on the same possession, whenever Denver’s defense takes a possession off. Best of all, Millsap is incredibly unselfish on the court.
Fans will never appreciate what Millsap has sacrificed this last month when he returned from a wrist injury and handed the keys over to Nikola Jokic to run the offense. The Denver Nuggets offense has gotten bogged down more often than not but it has never been for a lack of willingness on Millsap’s part to fit it. Last night against the OKC Thunder, Millsap did much more than just fit in. He dominated.
It had sort of been working toward this for the last month and has especially picked up steam following that ugly loss at Memphis. Memphis scored 14 against Miami, then 22 against Chicago. He scored 16 against the 76ers, 20 against the Raptors, and now 36 against the Thunder. Millsap is starting to get his groove back, and with it, Nuggets Nation has restored the tiniest shred of faith that the Nuggets can pull off the improbable but not impossible and run the table, winning their final six games to sneak into the playoffs.
Check out the highlights and dream with me!