Millsap — lauded Wednesday by Jazz coach Jerry Sloan for being "better than he was last year" and in "terrific shape" — visited with extended family, played some video games and mostly stayed close to the couch.
Never once, though, did he crack — comforted, at least, by the notion that $32 million spends almost as well in Portland as it does in Salt Lake City.
— — —
Curiously, during the courtship process, Millsap never met with Blazers general manager Kevin Pritchard or coach Nate McMillan.
Never visited Portland in July, either.
No wonder he still isn't sure if the match was meant to be.
"I mean, who knows? Who knows?" he said.
"You know, we can say it would have been a good fit — and during the season it could not have been. You know, who knows? I can't be the judge of that, can't tell that."
Nor does he have any idea how he would have melded with a Portland lineup that includes big men LaMarcus Aldridge and Greg Oden.
So even though Millsap may continue to take something of a back seat among Jazz bigs as long as one-time NBA All-Star center Mehmet Okur and two-time All-Star power forward Carlos Boozer are in Utah's picture, there was comfort in the known.
"I believe they would have found time for me, in a worst-case scenario, if that would have happened," Millsap said before addressing — for the umpteenth time — one of Jazz training camp's hot-button issues.
"But it's the same scenario here, if you look at it. So I'm not really paying too much attention to who's gonna start and who's not starting. Just however I can get in, I'm gonna get in."
— — —
As for whether or not the Blazers were merely playing games with the Jazz by making the offer as — their word — "toxic" and difficult to match as possible, it's a popular theory.
"I'm not gonna speculate," Williams said, "but you'd have to think something like that."
Millsap doesn't deny the possibility.
"You never know what other teams want with you," he said. "They could possibly have traded me. You know, who knows? … I didn't really want to go down the road and see what was at the end of that road, so that's why I just wanted it to be easy and wanted to be here.
"You knew somewhere down the line somebody was gonna throw in a monkey wrench, so … all I could do was just sit back and wait until everything was said and done and set in stone."
— — —
Next Tuesday, the Jazz pay a preseason visit of their own to Portland — one of six combined exhibition/regular-season games between Utah and the Blazers in just more than four months.
He won't, but Millsap — as one scribe suggested Wednesday — would have every right while there next week to wrap his arms around billionaire Blazers owner and Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and hug him as hard as he can.
"I mean, I should, right? I should. I should," he said with a laugh. "I should hug the whole front office, right?
"But, nah," Millsap added, suddenly turning serious. "It's a business, you know. I'm real grateful for what they did. Things worked out.
"It could have been a whole different story if I would have got there, but … what happened happened. I'm glad I'm here. It made it a whole lot easier on me and my family, and it was the best thing for me."
— — —
Had the Jazz not matched, 24-year-old Millsap said he and his closest relatives — including mother Bettye, his three brothers and uncle/agent DeAngelo Simmons — were prepared to move to Portland.
Instead, after renting for three years, he bought a house for himself and the whole family here in Salt Lake City.
"Uh, right after the I got contract," said Millsap, who also has two daughters.
Some in the Jazz organization have suggested Millsap should soon consider venturing out on his own, but — especially now that his ship's in — he wouldn't think of it.
"I keep my family around me," Millsap said. "They've been here so far. They've supported me a lot. It's good to have that support — wherever you're at.
"The people around me are the best people I could ever have. They've helped me a lot. They're not gonna let me do anything crazy or something stupid for my money to be gone."
He sees no reason whatsoever for cutting ties.
"It's worked so far. So far it's great," Millsap said "Ever since I got the contract, nothing really has changed. Things have really stayed the same. And the people who are around me are for my best interest.
"They care about my best interest — me first — and I really appreciate that. You know, I'm not a selfish guy. I'm gonna try to help my family as much as possible — and the way they look at it, it's 'me.' I respect that."
Whether it meant staying or packing, then, everyone Millsap was prepared for whatever was to come.
"If I had gone to Portland, they was headed up there with me," he said. "That's just how they are. We move in packs. We stay together."
- Facing Argentina, Messi in Copa semis not...
- WNBA undefeated: Lynx host Sparks for 20th...
- Cleveland set to hold parade for NBA champion...
- Deseret News podcast: 2016 NBA draft preview
- A look at how freshmen have fared with NBA...
- High school softball: A closer look at this...
- New Rome mayor maintains opposition to 2024...
- Former NBA MVP Derrick Rose traded from Bulls...
- Morning links: Athlon ranks Utah FBS... 89
- BYU football receives commitment from... 68
- Utah football to host Weber State in 2021 42
- Utah Jazz to acquire Indiana Pacers PG... 37
- Morning links: ESPN analysts critical... 24
- U. stadium gets bigger scoreboard,... 21
- Utah basketball: Poeltl taken by... 16
- Brad Rock: Jazz move up playoff... 14