+ Scouting report Undersized, high-energy 4 who can score around basket or hit midrange jumpers
+ Excellent rebounder with good hands and wide frame. Amazing knack for steals.
+ Size a problem defensively. Good passer. Moves well without ball into openings.
Millsap might be the most underrated player in the league. I love this guy. He’s not a prototype 4 because he’s undersized, but he’s athletic, skilled and just knows how to play. He beats smaller players on post-ups, takes bigger ones off the dribble and confounds both with his midrange jump shot.
Last season was his best yet – he averaged better than a point every two minutes, ranked sixth among power forwards in player efficiency rating, and had he been in the Eastern Conference certainly would have made the All-Star Game. The key is how broad-based his skills are: Millsap was in the top half of power forwards in every category I track except fouls per minute. All of them.
He was in the top quarter of power forwards in rebounds and assists. He got to the line and made his freebies. He made 41.6 percent of his long 2s and 71.6 percent of his shots in the basket area. He didn't turn it over. While he lacks a single defining go-to move, he has such an assortment of options that he can score on nearly anybody; in particular, his ball skills have really improved.
And for an undersized 4, his defense sure doesn't seem to be a problem. He fouls a lot, and that keeps him off the court sometimes. However, the Jazz were once again better with him on the court than off it, while Synergy's stats rated him above the league average for power forwards.
And then there's this little nugget: Millsap averaged 2.25 steals per 40 minutes. To put that in perspective, no other frontcourt player averaged more than 2.0, and no small forward matched Millsap's total either. The top 11 players in steal rate last season were 10 guys 6-4 or shorter -- and Paul Millsap.