Hawks Unlikely To Offer Paul Millsap Full Max

Hawks principal owner Tony Ressler has suggested that he’s willing to do whatever it takes to lock up free-agent-to-be Paul Millsap this summer, but acknowledged after adding Travis Schlenk to Atlanta’s front office that the new GM will have final say on basketball decisions. And, as Chris Vivlamore of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution writes, Schlenk doesn’t sound like he’s ready to put a full maximum salary contract offer on the table for Millsap.

“We are going to make Paul our best offer,” Schlenk said, per Vivlamore. “Will he have better offers? I don’t know. Do we want to keep Paul? Sure. I said last week, if you are building a team with all the things I’ve said, Paul checks all those boxes. He’s a hard-worker. He’s a good guy. He’s high-character. Skilled. He does all that stuff. We’d like to have him. The reality is, he might get better offers than we can make him.”

[RELATED: Hawks hire Travis Schlenk as GM]

While Millsap could get the same starting salary from any NBA team, the league’s Collective Bargaining Agreement allows the Hawks to offer the veteran big man more years and higher raises than any of the other 29 teams. As we detailed last month, based on a $101MM salary cap, the Hawks could go up to five years and $205MM+ for Millsap. Rival teams could offer $152MM+ over four years.

However, Schlenk’s suggestion that Millsap “might get better offers than we can make him” suggests that the Hawks won’t simply max him out. That approach to Millsap’s free agency probably makes sense. The former second-round pick is already 32 years old, and while he’s earned spots on four straight All-Star teams, he’s not exactly a perennial MVP candidate — having him on the books at age 36 for $46MM+ wouldn’t be ideal.

With Millsap’s Bird rights in hand, the Hawks have some flexibility in negotiations with Millsap, particularly in that fifth year. Last summer, for instance, the Grizzlies signed Mike Conley to a five-year contract that is only partially guaranteed in year five but is still worth more than what any other suitor could have offered. The Hawks could find a similar compromise, though it sounds as if another team willing to offer the full four-year max for Millsap could have a decent chance of luring him away from Atlanta.

Schlenk has met with Millsap’s agent twice since being hired by the Hawks, according to Vivlamore.

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19 thoughts on “Hawks Unlikely To Offer Paul Millsap Full Max

  1. RyanSlade22

    I love PM, but giving him the max would hurt the hawks in the long run. Might be best to let him walk.

  2. acarneglia

    I think he’ll go to Denver and form a really talented front court along with guys like Jokic, Faried, Chandler, and Gallinari and Plumlee(if they both resign)

    • Billy Winters

      I would much rather see the Nuggets go after Kevin Love. I think a package consisting of (Chandler, Farreed, Barton, Nelson, Darrell Arthur) would be worth getting Love.

      George Hill *Sign in FA
      Gary Harris
      Danillio Gallinari
      Kevin Love ** Trade for
      Jamal Murray

        • Billy Winters

          I’m not saying all those players, but if it took 3 of any combination of those players, I would be alright with it if it led to Kevin Love.

      • KCelts

        Kevin Love really isn’t worth that, but I do like the idea of Love in Denver. Denver is going to be a lot like Utah; a team that will turn heads and improve substantially.

        • Billy Winters

          For a team like Denver, I feel he would be a perfect pairing with Jokic minus not having an active shot blocker. I think people forgot how good Love can be if he is catered to on offense. The Nuggets, could bring love on and have am under contract for 3 more years, while this would almost certainly push them into contention in the West. Also they have the majority of their core on rookie deals, meaning they should use this summer or next summer to bring on 1 or 2 high paid FA’s.

  3. Lefty_Orioles_Fan

    Well, whatever Millsap gets, it will be pretty darn good for someone who was drafted: Draft: Utah Jazz, 2nd round (17th pick, 47th overall)

    I think the Sixers should give it a go to sign him
    Millsap kept up with Dennis Schröder, so he should be able to do that with anyone the Sixers currently have or acquire!

    PS How does someone like Millsap fall to 47th??
    The Sixers wound up with Rodney Carney, who has been long out of the NBA


    • TrustTheProcess

      We have too many front court players already. Plus Millsap is fading out of his prime

    • kylewait89

      He played at Louisiana Tech. It really isn’t hard to see why an undersized guy who played at a small school didn’t get a high billing.

  4. Excuse my lack of knowledge regarding the finer points of NBA contracts, but what is a “full” max? Is it redundant or is there something in addition to a max contract?

    • Luke Adams

      I’m referring to the “full max” as a fully guaranteed five-year max contract. So a four-year max wouldn’t qualify as “full,” and neither would the kind of deal Conley got last year (where the fifth year is only partially guaranteed).

  5. Dionis

    He can’t be stupid to think he’s worth a max, they should just let him go to Boston to play alongside Horford. Sign Hayward to play the 3, draft Fultz and thats it.

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