Posted August 05, 2012

Paul Millsap contract: Jazz F expected to decline extension, opt for free agency

NBA

Paul Millsap is expected to decline a contract extension from the Jazz to enter free agency after next season. (Melissa Majchrzak/Getty Images)

The Utah Jazz have offered forward Paul Millsap a three-year, approximately $25 million extension that he is expected to decline to enter free agency next offseason, The Salt Lake Tribune’s Brian T. Smith reported Saturday. From Smith’s report:

Initial indications are Millsap won’t agree to the extension, though, preferring to enter free agency in 2013 with plans to cash in on an inflated 2012 market that saw mid-tier forwards such as Gerald Wallace, Andrei Kirilenko, Nicolas Batum and Ryan Anderson recently receive lucrative multiyear contracts.

The 27-year-old Millsap is entering the last year of a four-year, $32 million deal that was controversial at the time the Jazz signed him. The Jazz matched the offer, which was frontloaded by the Portland Trail Blazers.

But Millsap has become one of the Jazz’s most important players. He has started all but two of the 140 games in which he’s appeared over the last two seasons for the Jazz. Last season, he averaged close to a double-double at 16.6 points and 8.8 rebounds per game.

It’s easy to see why Millsap would opt for free agency with the Jazz’s current offer. If he becomes a free agent, he would be eligible for a four-year deal from another team — and a five-year deal from the Jazz.