Monday, February 8, 2016

Andre Miller Climbs The Priority List

Andre Miller finally has an agent. And he has finally climbed to the top of the 76ers' priority list.

Andre Miller Climbs The Priority List

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Welcome to Sixerville, a blue-collar community founded on fundamentals, integrity and a willingness to work and improve. Shooting is optional, but that's an issue for the town fathers. Has been for years.

The economy in the outside world is sliding disastrously. But the morale and the level of optimism are going in the opposite direction just as rapidly. And with just about all the other issues that were hanging precipitously at the end of last season already addressed in some fashion, it's finally time to speak directly about the future of Andre Miller.

In some ways, it's amazing that it could take this long to begin to focus on the guy who was easily the team's MVP last season, but not when you realize the earlier issues included the dramatic signing of elton Brand, the drafting of Marreese Speights, the re-signing of Andre Iguodala and Lou Williams, the re-signing of coach Maurice Cheeks and the bench-filling additions of Theo Ratliff, Donyell Marshall, Royal Ivey and Kareem Rush.

It's also important to know that for several months Miller didn't have an agent. He does now. He signed last week with Andy Miller. Whether of not the Sixers decide to extend Andre Miller beyond this season, at least there is a formal representative with whom to negotiate.

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But before that even gets underway, let's clarify a couple of points:

Premise--Andre is 32, an age when players--particularly point guards--can begin to lose a step.

Counter--He has never depended on sheer speed; he's more like a pitcher who can change speeds and hit spots. And he he has shown no sign of losing any of that skill.

Premise--We've all heard the same refrain; Andre isn't happy here, he wants to play on the West Coast.

Counter--He told me in a recent interview that he has never made any comments about wanting to go West. He knows he ultimately has little control of where he ends up, but he likes the players here, he likes the addition of Brand, he likes the changes in the roster, he likes Cheeks.

He'd also like an extension. Most players would. You would. I would. Whether he gets one is up to the negotiators and president/GM Ed Stefanski's blueprint for the future. But right now, finally, Andre Miller is at the top of the priority list.

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About this blog
Bob Cooney has been at the Daily News for more than 20 years, working in the sports department for the past 15. This is his third season on the Sixers beat. He has covered just about everything, but mostly college basketball, where he was the La Salle beat writer for six seasons. E-mail Bob at cooneyb@phillynews.com and follow him on Twitter.

Bob Cooney
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