Utah Jazz: C.J. Miles eager to explore options as unrestricted free agent
Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
SALT LAKE CITY — Despite being just 25 years old, C.J. Miles has already logged seven seasons in the NBA — all with the Utah Jazz.
That, however, may change. For the first time in his career, the swingman is an unrestricted free agent.
"I'm definitely going to explore my options. I have to," Miles said. "I feel like I owe it to myself to be able to do that. (It's an) experience I need to be able to go through."
At the same time, though, Miles noted that he still believes there's room for him in Utah — where he can keep growing with the team.
"I grew up here, basically," Miles said while confirming that the Jazz remain an option in his future plans — although he later took a shot at head coach Tyrone Corbin's communication skills at Tuesday's locker cleanout.
Miles has appeared in 389 regular-season games for Utah, averaging 8.4 points and shooting 41.9 percent from the field. He's also played in 23 playoff games over his career, although he was sidelined with a strained calf throughout the recently concluded series with San Antonio.
Texas is home for Miles. He was an All-American at Skyline High in Dallas before turning pro after being drafted in the second round by the Jazz in 2005.
Signing with the hometown Mavericks, where he could possibly be reunited with former Utah teammate Deron Williams, intrigues Miles.
"If that was an issue that came up I definitely would look at it. Who wouldn't, especially with the way that team is built now," Miles said. "They're aging a little bit and I'm pretty sure they're going to be looking for some guys that do some of the things I do."
Wherever Miles ends up, he's just hopeful it'll be a place that will help him grow as a player and win basketball games.
And yes, Miles considers Utah a franchise where he can do that. Even so, his options will be explored. There's excitement and uncertainty, he acknowledged, in being an unrestricted free agent for the first time.
"I'm going to just attack the summer the way I've been attacking as far as working on my game and just put everything else in God's hands," Miles said.
Utah's two other unrestricted free agents — Josh Howard and Blake Ahearn — also addressed their futures.
"I enjoyed my time. It would be an option," Howard said of the possibility of a return. "I just have to see how things go in the offseason."
Stability, a good fit and a championship run are among the variables that will come into play.
"All of that — just a place where you know guys want me to play," Howard said.
While noting that anywhere you can find a spot in the NBA is great, Ahearn enjoyed his short tenure with Utah.
"It's a great locker room — a good bunch of guys and stuff like that," he said, while calling the Jazz a young and talented team. "I think it would be a great spot for me personally."
Ahearn continued that he would love the opportunity to return.
DeMarre Carroll, who has a team option on his contract for next season, made it clear that he also wants to return to the Jazz and the feeling is expected to be mutual.
"Oh yeah, most definitely. We've got the best fans, a great young unit and we're making strides to really be a good team," Carroll said. "I would love to come back here."
So, too, does Jamaal Tinsley — another player with a team option for 2012-13.
"I let my agent deal with that. The opportunity was here this season and I took advantage of it," Tinsley said. "... I would love to come back."
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