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SALT LAKE CITY — He signed his first NBA regular season contract on Jan. 5, 2015, but a year later, Elijah Millsap got some bad news.
The Utah Jazz have decided to waive Millsap ahead of the NBA's contract guarantee deadline Thursday, according to the franchise. Yahoo! Sports' Shams Charania was the first to report the news.
Millsap played 67 games in a Jazz uniform since being signed to two 10-day contracts in January before earning a non-guaranteed multi-year deal at the completion of those shorter looks. He's also the younger brother of former Utah Jazz big man, Paul Millsap.
Millsap impressed the Jazz with his terrific defense, and his unique ability to squirt through pick and roll screens from big men. At times, he was the Jazz's designated perimeter defender in clutch situations, and was a big part of the Jazz's league leading defense in the latter half of the 2014-15 season. Millsap played nearly 20 minutes per game as injuries decimated the Jazz's wing rotation.
But Millsap turned out to be too one-dimensional for the Jazz to operate effectively in 2015-16. His career shooting percentages are ugly, as Millsap shot just 33 percent from the floor and 28 percent from the 3-point line in his Jazz career. He also fouled very frequently for a perimeter defender, averaging 6.9 fouls per 36 minutes in his time on the court this season.
In the end, with a full roster, the Jazz wanted to be able to use their 15th roster spot to explore other players that may have more potential on both ends of the court. With the deadline coming this week, waiving Millsap now made sense.
The Jazz's roster now stands at 14 players.