Editor’s Note: This piece is actually written by our new contributing staff writer, Corey Christiansen (@corey04 on twitter). I’m sure you’ve seen him around on various message boards and I’m very pleased he decided to make some contributions around this place.
Andre Miller played fantastic for the Denver Nuggets against the LA Lakers on Tuesday. He has had an excellent NBA career. It would be envied by just about any point guard in the league. There are two major things that automatically hold him back from being in the Hall Of Fame conversation.
1. No All-Star appearances. He won’t ever get to an All-Star game at this point in his career.
2. Lack of post-season success. This is another reason Andre Miller has not been considered for the HOF.
With this I don’t think he will be a HOFer but there are players I would compare to him to a Chauncey Billups. Billups has had a pretty good career and won a championship. He has been to a couple All Star games and also won a championship and had an MVP of the finals. I believe Billups is a Hall of Famer. The statistics between Billups and Miller are negligible. Miller has a few more assists and Billups. I don’t see much of a difference other than those achievements.
If Miller leads Denver to a win in this LA series then he will get a little more respect and many people will consider him an underrated player in the NBA and should be in the Hall of Fame discussion. In NBA circles winning a series against LA means a lot and would be a big get for Miller.
Now knowing that Miller probably won’t be a Hall of Famer lets play the fun what-if game.
What if the Cavaliers never traded Miller?
They traded Miller to create a tank mode team for 2003’s NBA draft. This was where the Cav’s drafted Lebron James. If somehow they could keep Miller on their team and still get the number one pick. Miller then becomes the point guard and the second man to Lebron James. Does Cleveland get close to a championship with Miller and Lebron? I think they get to at least 2 NBA finals before Lebron leaves and may have won a championship. That is a lot of what ifs but I think if Miller stayed in Cleveland and is extremely successful there. He would be gaining a lot more Hall of Fame acknowledgement.
What if Andre Miller never signed with Denver?
This is one I must throw in there. Carmelo Anthony makes everyone else’s statistics worse on his team. This was no different with Andre. Many of Dre’s prime years of his career were downgraded statistically because he played with Carmelo Anthony. Once he left that team he went to averaging his highest points per game a season (17) with Philadelphia but during those 4 years he averaged about 3 points less because he had Carmelo Anthony as a teammate. Does this make a difference? Definitely. I think he would have made a team more competitive than he did at that time and would have won a playoff series.
If someone doubts my reasoning read this article
Andre Miller may not get the Hall of Fame nod and knowing him he probably does not want it. He is the man who has shied away from the spotlight and just plays basketball because he loves it. He could have been great with some different career moves but hindsight is 20/20 and I think if we look back we see that Andre Miller has had major value. He was traded for shoe in Hall of Famer Allen Iverson. We as Ute fans will always remember him for the triple double he put up on Mike Bibby and Arizona.