Loading up their frontcourt for what’s expected to be another down season, the Los Angles Lakers have officially announced the signing of power forward Jordan Hill.
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) July 23, 2014
While the figures of Hill’s deal has drawn a lot of attention (Hill signed for a two-year deal worth $9 million per with a team option in the second season), this signing is a clear indication that Los Angeles plans on keep their options available for next seasons and those following.
By including a team option in the second year of Hill’s contract, the Lakers will be able to free themselves of Hill’s contract as they continue to pursue big name players in free agency. A few of the names expected to be available in the summer of 2015 include LeBron James, Kevin Love, LaMarcus Aldridge, Rudy Gay, and Marc Gasol.
But if Jordan Hill outplays his contract, proving the be one of the best young centers/forwards in the NBA, LA will be able to secure his talents for another year under his then-market value.
With Hill signed, the former lottery pick joins a jam-packed frontcourt. The Lakers have signed Ed Davis, re-signed last year’s rookie Ryan Kelly, employ Julius Randle, the sixth overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft, and recently claimed former Chicago Bulls forward Carlos Boozer off the amnesty wire. Robert Sacre is also on the roster.
This puts Hill in the position to prove he’s a NBA starter in the NBA, likely starting at center alongside either Julius Randle or Carlos Boozer, a selection to be determined later when Los Angeles finally hires a head coach.