San Antonio Spurs point guard Patrick Mills will likely decline his player option worth one million and enter free agency according to Paul Garcia of Project Spurs. Mills has until June 25th to opt out of his contract.
Hereís what Mills had to say regarding his decision:
ĒI feel like I need to do my due diligence and really go and see what there is to make sure I explore every option,Ē Mills said.
ĒBut in saying that, I really enjoy being in San Antonio and being part of that program. I definitely want it done soon and that is what Iím trying to do so that I can get it out of the way and go to London with a clear head with the Boomers.Ē
This move isnít surprising considering Mills played well enough to earn more money in the open market. ********* ranked Mills as the 96th best free agent ahead of John Lucas III, Earl Clark, Jannero Pargo and Willie Green.
Acquired on March 23rd, Mills appeared in 16 games for San Antonio. He averaged 16.3 minutes, 10.3 points, 1.8 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 42.9% shooting from behind the arc. Mills assisted on 25.9% of the Spursí possessions while he was on the court. Only T.J. Ford, Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker were better passers.
Millsí tenure with San Antonio isnít over yet though. The Spurs still have the opportunity to retain Mills in free agency. They have an advantage over other teams because he proved to be an immediate fit in Popovichís system. The desire to maintain continuity could be appealing. In a limited sample size, Mills was one of the most efficient players on the team and that will always have some value irrespective to any teamís specific needs.
I'm sure he expected a bit of a better role during his tenure with the Spurs after being picked up mid-season. Popovich vowed, however, to develop Neal as the backup point guard this year and as a result Mills' minutes were limited. I'm sure if the Spurs were to promise him a more consistent role next season then perhaps he would return, but with rumors of mutual interest between the Spurs and French guard Nando De Colo floating around it makes Mills' future with the franchise look bleak. I'm sure he will get payed a good amount by a young team looking for a backup PG.