By Darnell Mayberry Published: July 26, 2008
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C.J. Miles will not become the first free agent to sign with Oklahoma City.

Utah matched the Oklahoma City franchise's four-year, $15 million contract offer to Miles on Friday, keeping the restricted free agent shooting guard with the Jazz.


Oklahoma City did its best to outbid Utah by offering the 21-year-old Miles a more lucrative contract than the three-year veteran has proved he's worth. Miles, who has career averages of 4.0 points, 1.3 rebounds and 0.8 assists in 120 games, would have earned slightly more than $1 million next season.

The Jazz reportedly never offered Miles a contract extension worth more than $4 million over two years.

Oklahoma City general manager Sam Presti declined to comment on Miles since he is under contract with another team. But Miles, the 34th overall pick in 2005 out of Dallas' Skyline High School, would have joined Kevin Durant, Jeff Green and Russell Westbrook as the team's core.

Although Miles averages just 10.5 minutes for his career, Oklahoma City was believed to be targeting Miles as a low-risk, high-reward player who has excellent long-term potential. Because Miles turned 21 on March 18, his best basketball is said to still be years away.

The Jazz wanted to hang on to that potential, although the decision comes as somewhat of a surprise because of Utah's salary cap concerns as well as the team's stockpile of young shooting guards. Utah has former first-round picks Ronnie Brewer and Morris Almond, both 23, as well as 27-year-old sharp shooter Kyle Korver.



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