If Larry Bird had extended a qualifying offer to Solomon Hill before he had a breakout season with the Pacers last year, Indiana would not be losing a nice young player.
Indiana’s loss is New Orleans’ gain.
The New Orleans Pelicans have reached a deal with the combo forward, reports Marc Stein of ESPN.
That top end number is close to $52 million, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports. With that much money (leaving the Pelicans will less than $15 million to spend) it’s hard to imagine Ryan Anderson returning to the Big Easy.
Hill showed promise last season both as a three and a small-ball four in Indiana. While his raw numbers are not eye popping — 4.2 points a game, 32 percent shooting from three — he was able to make plays, get to the rim, and play improved defense. The Pelicans are betting on his ability to improve his shot and take another step forward — if so this is a fair deal.
Hill is the kind of young, athletic player the Pelicans need to bring in so they can play the Alvin Gentry up-tempo system properly. This is a good signing.