SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Utah Jazz made their biggest move of the offseason by trading for Indiana Pacers point guard George Hill, leaving the team without a first-round pick in the NBA draft on Thursday.
The day was fairly uneventful as the team didn’t add a player to the roster until late in the second round.
“It was quite the unique draft relative to (No.) 12 and all the players that were available,” Jazz general manager Dennis Lindsey said.
Utah took forward Taurean Prince with the No. 12 selection, but will move the pick to the Atlanta Hawks.
The Jazz were involved in a three-way trade that sent the pick to the Hawks and brought Hill to Utah. The Pacers received Indianapolis native Jeff Teague from the Hawks.
While the deal cannot be announced officially, Hill’s agent, Bill Neff, confirmed the details.
Prince averaged 15.9 points, 6.1 rebounds and 2.3 assists as a Baylor senior. He was named 2016 All-Big 12 first team. Prince won the 2015 Big 12 Sixth Man of the Year award.
Lindsey said he tried to trade back into the first round, but wasn’t able to complete a deal.
The Jazz finished 40-42 last season and look to make a push into the playoffs for the first time since 2011-12. The team was in the market for veteran rotational help, shooting and point guard depth this offseason. Hill checks all those boxes in a 6-foot-3, 195-pound frame with a defensive mindset that fits well with coach Quin Snyder.
Hill adds defense and depth to a spot that could be in flux for the Jazz if point guard Dante Exum, the 2014 No. 5 overall pick, comes back slower than expected from a torn ACL that cost him the entire 2015-16 season.
Hill and Teague both have one year left on their current deals and each is scheduled to make $8 million this season.
The Jazz have said Exum is the point guard of the future, but Lindsey wouldn’t say if he would be the starter in 2016-17.
“We saw what happened last year,” Lindsey said. “We were very proud of our young group and how well they developed. … We did get hurt and fell short of one of our goals to reach the second season. Because of that … (we) expect a lot of competition on our roster.”
The Jazz traded the rights to their No. 42 pick, Seton Hall guard Isaiah Whitehead, to the Brooklyn Nets for the No. 55 selection and cash. The Nets took North Carolina point guard Marcus Paige at No. 55 for the Jazz.
Utah used the No. 52 pick to select Weber State forward Joel Bolomboy.
The 6-9, 235-pounder was the 2016 Big Sky Player of the Year and two-time Defensive Player of the Year. He averaged 17.1 points and 12.6 rebounds as a senior and set the Weber State single-season record with 415 rebounds. The Associated Press named him a 2016 All-American honorable mention.
“Athleticism … to be able to move laterally, run, jump,” Lindsey said. “He’s got some tools to work with.
“We want serious two-way players. Guys who can shoot the ball. Certainly experience is something we were looking at and have some four-year guys here and a few things to announce coming in the future.”
The Jazz will receive the rights to Paige from the trade with the Nets. The 6-2, 175-pounder averaged 12.6 points, 2.5 rebounds and 3.7 assists as a senior. His best season came in 2013-14, when he averaged 17.5 points, 4.2 assists and 3.2 rebounds and was named first-team All-ACC and the league’s Most Improved Player.
“Marcus is an excellent player who can really score the ball,” Lindsey said. “He’s very underrated in his pick-and-roll skills. He had to score for North Carolina and took them to the national championship game.”
The Jazz closed out the draft by taking California’s Tyrone Wallace with the final pick of the draft. The 6-5, 200-pound guard averaged 15.3 points, 4.4 assists and 5.3 rebounds per game.
The Jazz now have seven point guards on the roster — Hill, Exum, Shelvin Mack, Raul Neto, Trey Burke, Paige and Wallace.