Has Anyone Seen George Hill
While George Hill will forever be remembered as the guy whom the Spurs fleeced the Pacers for the rights to Kawhi Leonard, he has been a solid player throughout his NBA career. Serving the role as a capable shooter, willing defender and solid floor general he is a perfectly acceptable NBA starting point guard. For the first 30 games in Utah last season, he was a bona fide All-Star absolutely balling out. Hill has also shot over 40% from 3 point range the past three campaigns.
When the Sacramento Kings signed him to a 3 year, $57 million de-escalating contract this offseason the entire NBA fanbase raised its eyebrows. This is a guy who is a solid starter on a good team. In general, the fourth best player on a playoff squad who knows his role and performs it amiably but in no way worth nearly $20 mil per year. The assumption was that he would be a piece to the puzzle as the Kings rebuild around young talent. Hill should be the stabilizing force that shows the young guards how to be a starter with a long career. In essence, the perfect mentor for De’Aaron Fox, Buddy Hield, Frank Mason and Bogdan Bogdanovic.
In reality, Hill has not been part of the action this season. He is only playing about 25 minutes per game this year. He is not getting the run commensurate to a $20 million per year player and, hypothetical, NBA starting point guard. The truth is that De’Aaron Fox has been dynamic and special all year long. Hill can still get it done as an average starting guard. His shooting percentages are consistent with his career marks and he is still hitting 40% from 3. He just isn’t as exciting an option as Fox. When you have a Lamborghini in the garage, why would you drive the Toyota Corolla?
Everyone likes George Hill as a player and teammate, he just is in the wrong spot in Sacramento and is apparently starting to get frustrated. After a recent loss to the Bucks, Hill tweeted out this:
His minutes have continued to dwindle as the losses mount in Sacramento. He has averaged 23 minutes per game over the last 6 contests as the Kings have gone .500 with wins over the Lakers, Warriors and Bulls. These are not starters minutes and the veteran guard is understandably dismayed by the situation. The Kings should probably look to get something else for Hill as he ages past being 31 this season. He would look great back in Utah or running the point for a Denver team in desperate need of an upgrade at lead guard spot. He is a playoff point guard playing professor to the Sacramento youngsters.