Paul Millsap is one of the more interesting free agent names on the market, mainly because it wouldn’t seem as though the Atlanta Hawks can afford to let him walk.
But at age 30 and after nine NBA seasons, this may be Millsap’s last chance at a large payday, and when looking at the way things played out in Atlanta over the second half of the season and into the playoffs, it’s worth wondering if the same level of success can be expected by simply bringing everyone back.
It was never a sure thing that the Hawks would come at Millsap with a contract at or near the five-year max. But now, some unexpected competition may end up forcing their hand.
Boom: Paul Millsap met with Orlando Magic in Atlanta at 12:01 last night, high interest between both. Will decide between Magic and Hawks.
Seeing Orlando emerge as a real option for an All-Star free agent like Millsap comes as a bit of a surprise, but the Magic have plenty to offer.
There’s no state tax in Florida, so contracts signed with teams there end up having a significant level of extra value. And the Magic have a nice young core of guys like Elfrid Payton and Victor Oladipo, and added Mario Hezonja in this summer’s draft.
Orlando may lose restricted free agent Tobias Harris, though the team can choose to keep him by matching any offer he receives. Millsap would be a nice complement to him or provide an upgrade as a replacement, but after a successful 60-win season in Atlanta that concluded with a trip to the Eastern Conference finals, it would seem likely that Millsap would return if the Hawks are willing to max him out.