The Man E. Faces of Andre Miller, through the years.
Denver Nuggets PG Andre Miller has been traded four times in his 15-year career.
Drafted by the Cleveland Cavaliers eighth overall out of the University of Utah, he’s enjoyed a longer, and arguably more distinguished career* than No.2 overall pick Steve Francis. Of six guards (three point guards) taken in the ‘99 lottery**, only Miller and Jason Terry remain active. Miller was the third point guard taken, after Francis and third overall pick Baron Davis.
After setting the franchise record for total assists in a season (882) and the only player to average more than 10 or more assists and points*** in 2001-02 in three seasons, Miller was moved along with Bryant Stith to the Los Angeles Clippers for Harold Jamison and Darius Miles.
An astute observer, he knew no good could ever come from staying with the Los Angeles Clippers. After one season he bolted to Denver, which was then preparing to enter the Melo Age. It was the team’s most successful era since the franchise’s halcyon days in the ABA.
Looking to advance deep into the playoffs, Denver made a big splash three seasons later, trading Miller, former No.1 overall bust Joe Smith and a first round pick to the Philadelphia 76ers for Allen Iverson.
At 33, he signed another free agent deal to go back west and play for Rip City, where he scored a regular season career high 52 points, while matching a playoff high 31.
Anyone who hated Blake Griffin will always remember this.
Before his three-year deal with Portland ended, he was packaged on draft day as an expiring contract with first round pick Jordan Hamilton. In exchange the Blazers got fat Raymond Felton. After averaging 12.7 points and 8.8 assists per 36 minutes in the strike-shortened season, the Nuggets elected to bring back the veteran on another three-year contract to help stabilize a post Melo future.
The durable fuck**** is still going strong, at times acting like Ty Lawson’s mentor, and other times taking over as the primary point guard.
*We’re talking length of career and productivity. Obviously Franchise had a superior three to four year peak than Miller.
**Though Miller ranks third in win shares from that class, behind Shawn Marion and Elton Brand, guess how many times he was named to the All Star team? None. Wally Szczerbiak and Andrei Kirilenko were, once upon a dancefloor, all stars. Must be the Y2K bug or something.
***That was kind of disorienting. NBA viewers were used to seeing guys like Kevin Johnson, Tim Hardaway and Isiah Thomas averaging more than 20 points and 10 assists a season.
****From his rookie season in 1999 to his age-36 season last year, Miller has missed six games. One came from the suspension he drew for barreling into Griffin. Two more came after a mid-season move from Denver to Philly. Miller has played In all of Denver’s 24 games so far this season.