Eastern Notes: Hill, Lue, D-League

Because the Pacers declined to exercise their team option on Solomon Hill for 2016/17, the small forward is now set to become an unrestricted free agent and Indiana cannot offer Hill a salary for next season greater than $2,306,019, which is the value of the option the Pacers declined. Team executive Larry Bird, speaking at today’s press conference, noted that he told Hill in his exit interview that that the team would consider re-signing him, Candace Buckner of The Indianapolis Star relays in a series of tweets. Bird also told the 25-year-old that he did him a favor by declining the option because it lit a fire under him this season, Buckner adds. Hill made 59 appearances for the Pacers this season, notching averages of 4.2 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.0 assist in 14.7 minutes per contest. His shooting line on the season was .447/.324/.857.

Here’s more from out of the Eastern Conference:

  • Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue has consistently held LeBron James accountable for his mistakes, something former coach David Blatt was unable or unwilling to do, and it has strengthened the relationship between James and Lue as a result, Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com writes.
  • Bucks GM John Hammond told members of the media that Milwaukee hopes to establish its own D-League affiliate in time for the 2017/18 season, as Chris Reichert of Upside & Motor relays (via Twitter).
  • The Nets made significant strides in their 3-point shooting as a team after David Nurse joined the team as a shooting coach in January, Ian Begley of ESPN.com notes (ESPN Now link). Prior to Nurse’s arrival, Brooklyn shot just 32.6% from beyond the arc, which was good for 28th in the league, Begley writes. But the Nets actually led the league from deep after Nurse came aboard, sinking a stellar 40.7% of their 3-point shots.

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