C.J. Miles on What Could Have Been
Utah guard C.J. Miles nearly became a member of the Thunder this summer when the team signed the restricted free agent to a $14.8 million offer sheet that the Jazz ultimately matched a week later.
The Salt Lake Tribune picked Miles’ brain about his near change of address, and Miles says he could have stomached the team’s league-worst 6-33 record.
“I think as long as we were getting better and making progress, I think it would be a big gain knowing how young we were and where we’d be in the next year and the year after that,” Miles said.
The decision to keep Miles, while risky because Utah might struggle to re-sign forwards Carlos Boozer and Paul Millsap next summer, has paid dividends this season. Miles is averaging 9.7 points, 2.3 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 22.9 minutes. He had started every game before missing the past two with a sprained ankle, which might keep him out Wednesday against the Thunder.
If Miles plays, though, keep an eye on him. When the Thunder played in Salt Lake City back on Nov. 7, Miles showed a nice all-around game, mixing perimeter shooting with a nice ability to slash to the basket while defending at the other end with his length and athleticism. He finished with seven points, three rebounds and two assists in only 16 minutes, but his impact on the game, seen mostly in his head-to-head matchup with Kevin Durant, was much bigger.
Miles doesn’t turn 22 until March 18 and would have grown nicely alongside fellow young guns Durant, Jeff Green and Russell Westbrook.
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