INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Pacers selected 6-foot-7 forward Solomon Hill with their first-round pick Thursday night, the 23rd selection overall.
Hill averaged 13.4 points, 5.3 rebounds and 2.7 assists in his senior season at Arizona. He was the Wildcats’ No. 2 scorer last season.
After winning the Central Division crown and pushing NBA champion Miami to seven games in their first Eastern Conference finals appearance in nine years, the Pacers went into the draft looking for depth rather than starters. Hill fits that mold.
He’s considered a solid 3-point shooter who can get to the free-throw line and finishes strong at the rim. He’s also considered a solid rebounder.
Indiana wasn’t scheduled to pick again until the second round, No. 53 overall.
Hill was a starter at Arizona in his last 78 appearances. He led the Wildcats in rebounding (5.3), field goal percentage and assists (2.7). He has the ability to beat defenders off the dribble. He posted 27 games in double figures as a junior to go with 12 double-doubles.
While Hill might not wow scouts with his physical gifts, he hopes to win some over with his hard work.
“The greats have a great work ethic,” Hill said after one of his two workouts with the Pacers. “They say Kobe and MJ never sleep. You think about those guys doing what they do on a nightly basis, if they don’t sleep, what’s my excuse?”