Sources: Nuggets eye Mike Miller

Updated: July 21, 2013, 8:22 PM ET
By Shea Serrano | ESPN.com

The Denver Nuggets have emerged as a new suitor at the forefront of the free-agent pursuit of Mike Miller, according to sources close to the process.

Miller
Miller

Sources told ESPN.com that the Nuggets are now getting strong consideration from Miller along with the early frontrunners in the race to sign him: Oklahoma City and Memphis.

Miller, according to sources, met face-to-face Friday with new Grizzlies owner Robert Pera and CEO Jason Levien after an earlier sitdown with Thunder general manager Sam Presti. Sources said that Thunder All-Star Kevin Durant and Grizzlies All-Star Marc Gasol have both taken an active role in recruiting Miller, who has received interest from a number of contenders after being released earlier this week by the Miami Heat via the amnesty provision.

The Nuggets have joined the hunt, sources said, with the promise of minutes at the wing positions after losing two key performers in that department -- Andre Iguodala and Corey Brewer -- in free agency.

Most of the teams pursuing Miller are offering a minimum salary but pitching the opportunity to take on a prominent role as a perimeter specialist on a championship contender.

The Houston Rockets, sources said, have also made Miller an offer that the 33-year-old is considering.

Despite his role in helping Miami win back-to-back championships, Miller was amnestied Tuesday in a financially motivated move that will save the Heat as much as $17 million on luxury-tax payments next season. They still owe him $12.8 million in salary over the next two seasons.

Miller averaged just 4.8 points while shooting 42 percent from 3-point range during the regular season for Miami. But he played a big role for the Heat in the NBA Finals, shooting 61 percent from 3-point range and starting the last four games.

Shortly after rumblings began to circulate Wednesday night that the Cleveland Cavaliers were interested in claiming Miller off waivers, reports of the veteran forward needing back surgery or even considering retirement arose. Despite dealing with bulging disks in his back throughout the 2011-12 season, Miller wound up playing in 59 games this past season, for his highest total since 2008-09.

Earlier this week, Miller said he was feeling healthy and looking forward to next season, telling the South Florida Sun-Sentinel: "I'm excited about the next spot. I'm re-energized. I really am. I'm just feeling healthy. I'm ready to play. I started to get back in [the gym] again last week and I can't wait to play again next year."

ESPN.com's Brian Windhorst contributed to this report.

Shea Serrano (@SheaSerrano) is a writer based in Houston. He has written for MTV, XXL, Vice, Complex, Myspace, and other outlets.

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