2: Patty Mills
Patty Mills signed a two-year, $12 million contract with Brooklyn during the offseason. He’s played in a sixth-man role for the majority of his 14-year career.
The 41 games that he’s started in this season is a career-high for Mills. In 2017-18, he started in 36 games for the Spurs but other than that, the next highest number of games that he started in throughout his career is eight (2016-17).
Between Harris being out since mid-November and Irving sitting out/transitioning into a part-time role, Mills has taken on an increased workload. He’s averaging a career-high 13.4 points and is shooting 42.5% from the field and 41.9% from the 3-point line.
Mills’ production has weaned over the past couple of weeks but since the Nets landed Dragic in the buyout market, the Australian native will be able to fall back into a limited role. That may seem like it’s a bad thing but in actuality, it’s what Mills is made for.
If Harris doesn’t play again this season, Brooklyn will be relying on Curry and Mills from the 3-point line. Curry will likely continue to start for the Nets and Mills will be a player that will come off the bench and knock down a few 3-pointers when he’s needed.
Mills’ praises can’t be sung loud enough. In a year full of inconsistency, Brooklyn was lucky to sign him in free agency. Over the next few weeks, he’ll transition back to a member of the second unit. However, that doesn’t mean that the team can afford for his performance to take a dip.
The 33-year-old’s playoff experience (on the court and in the locker room) is going to be huge for the Nets.