Jordan Hill to Pacers: Latest Contract Details, Comments, Reaction

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured Columnist

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The Indiana Pacers reportedly plugged a gaping hole in their frontcourt by coming to terms on an agreement with former Los Angeles Lakers big man Jordan Hill.

Sporting News' Sean Deveney first reported the deal on July 9. The Indianapolis Star's Candace Buckner confirmed Deveney's report. 

Buckner later reported July 13 that Hill signed a one-year deal worth $5 million, with the team confirming the agreement a day later.

In the last week, Indiana's front line has undergone a major transformation.

Not only did the Pacers announce that they dealt Roy Hibbert to the Los Angeles Lakers for a future second-round pick, but David West declined a $12.6 million player option to sign a veteran's minimum deal with the San Antonio Spurs, per Yahoo Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski. Luis Scola also bolted for the Toronto Raptors on a one-year, $3 million deal, according to Wojnarowski

Hill averaged career highs of 12.0 points and 7.9 rebounds last season, but he shot a career-low 45.9 percent from the field over the course of 70 appearances (57 starts) as he faded in and out of head coach Byron Scott's doghouse.

Since the Pacers are interested in pushing Paul George up to the 4 more often next season, slotting Hill in at the 5 could make the most sense. 

"He'll play a lot of power forward and small forward," Pacers president of basketball operations Larry Bird said of George during an NBA TV summer league broadcast, according to the Indianapolis Star's Nat Newell"I'm the one who thinks he can play the 4. I think the mismatches on the offensive end are greater than the defensive liability he'll have. I think he can handle it."

Should George predominantly play the 4, Hill's a sneaky candidate to thrive in the middle. According to 82games.com, Hill posted a player efficiency rating of 20.1 at the 5 last season—5.5 points better than his PER at power forward. 

"He can run the floor, he can finish alley-oops, he can pound the offensive glass, and he can score well enough when given space around the rim," Jared Wade wrote for 8points9seconds.com.

A capable mid-range jump-shooter and ferocious rebounder, Hill should fit in nicely with the rough-and-tumble Pacers as they seek to return to the postseason following a one-year absence. 

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