The new Denver Nuggets front office needs package Veteran guard Andre Miller in a trade.
Miller will be entering his 15th season in the NBA in 2013-14. The Nuggets 37-year-old has put Miller on the chopping block early-on in the offseason. The team had reportedly tried to package Miller on draft night to the Memphis Grizzlies in the trade for Darrell Arthur and the 46th draft pick, but the Grizzlies didn’t want him.
On the second day of 2013 NBA Free Agency, Chris Tomasson of FOX Sports tweeted this:
“Source says Nuggets guard Andre Miller could be traded this summer. Doesn’t fit in long-term future & George Karl, who loved Miller, is gone”.
Like Tomasson said, Miller doesn’t fit in for the long-term future. The Nuggets were the third-youngest team in the 2012-13 NBA season (the average age on the team was 24). They have already added J.J. Hickson (24) and will likely offer rookie Erick Green (22) a contract in the coming weeks.
The new coaching situation in Denver will hurt Miller’s chances of returning as well. Coach Brian Shaw specializes in developing young players. Miller, the backup to starting guard Ty Lawson last season, will see significantly less playing time with Shaw at the helm. Last season, Miller played in every single game and averaged 26 minutes. Shaw will undoubtedly give Evan Fournier and Green time on the floor so they can develop quicker.
On top of the age discrepancy, the Nuggets have been rumored to be involved in a three-team sign-and-trade with the Golden State Warriors and Utah Jazz that would send point guard Randy Foye to Denver. Foye, 29, averaged less assists than Miller with the same amount of playing time. However, Foye plays better defense and can keep up with younger, faster guards. Miller struggled in the 2013 playoffs guarding Golden State’s speedy Stephen Curry and Harrison Barnes.
The addition of Foye would clear up $12 million in cap space on an already tight Nuggets budget. The Nuggets owe Miller $5 million this season, with only $2 million guaranteed. With that price tag, it wouldn’t be hard to find Miller a new home.
The Nuggets still need to address the absence of Andre Iguodala. They could use Miller in a trade to acquire Milwaukee Buck free agent Monta Ellis, who the Nuggets reportedly have strong interest in.