June 5, 2023

76ers trade for George Hill, puts the team out of Kyle Lowry contest


Photo by Alonzo Adams/USA TODAY Sports

It took almost all day, and a lot of refreshing on Twitter, but the Philadelphia 76ers have made a trade for a veteran guard as they seek to improve their chances of winning the Eastern Conference on Thursday afternoon. The Sixers agreed to acquire the Oklahoma City Thunder’s George Hill, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania. Here are the terms of the three-team deal, per ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski: 

Ferguson has been outside of the Sixers’ rotation all season, and the 23-year-old Bradley has been valuable as of recent as the team’s starting center, Joel Embiid, out because of a left knee bone bruise.

Brazdeikis, a 22-year-old forward, doesn’t project to be a part of the rotation. The Michigan product has spent most of his professional career in the G League and has a $1.8 million player option for next season.

Hill has a $9.6 million salary for this year and approximately $10 million for the 2021-22 season, with $1.3 million guaranteed. The 34-year-old played 14 games for Oklahoma City this season, averaging 11.8 points and 3.1 assists. He’s been sidelined since late January after having right thumb surgery, and the timeline for his return is unclear. Hill led the NBA in three-point percentage last season (46.0%) as Milwaukee’s backup point guard. There’s little question that, when healthy, he’s capable of making a positive impact in the playoffs.

The Sixers’ bench has been dependent on Shake Milton, Matisse Thybulle, and Furkan Korkmaz. Head coach Doc Rivers expressed earlier in the season that his team’s second unit lacked a true point guard, and that half-court offense was sometimes a struggle as a result.

Indeed, the Sixers as a team have scored only 95.2 points per 100 half-court plays, per Cleaning the Glass, which ranks 20th in the NBA.

Another strength of Hill’s is that he doesn’t turn the ball over much. He’s been below league average in turnover percentage in 11 of his 13 NBA seasons, according to Cleaning the Glass. The Sixers rank 26th in turnover percentage.

The 31-13 Sixers, who will play the shorthanded Lakers Thursday night, lead the East with 28 regular-season games left. They’ll hope Hill can integrate smoothly into their rotation and help them in the postseason. 

On the flip side, with the acquisition of Hill, the Kyle Lowry push would have been somewhat unnecessary, so ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski is now saying that the Sixers are officially out on the Villanova product. Yeah, look – it just doesn’t make sense anymore. The Sixers went out and got a veteran ball handler, and added more to the second unit in the process. Adding Lowry would still improve the team, but only barely, and in an area that they just addressed.

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