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Former Pitt Star Blake Hinson Signs Two-Way Deal with LA Lakers

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Pitt forward Blake Hinson

The Los Angeles Lakers may have turned heads by drafting Bronny James in the second round of the 2024 NBA Draft, but if you ask Pitt fans, Blake Hinson easily could’ve heard his name called in that slot.

So, it only makes sense that while it may not have come about through a Lakers’ draft selection, Hinson will still have a chance with the Lakers this summer. Hinson signed a two-way deal with the Los Angeles Lakers following the conclusion of the 2024 NBA Draft, Shams Charania of The Athletic reported Thursday night.

Hinson, despite a standout career in Pittsburgh over the last two years, was a longshot to be selected in the draft. But his size, three-point shooting and feel for the game bode well for his chances of carving out a career at the highest level of basketball.

Hinson — a 6-foot-8 forward from Deltona, Fla. — is coming off a final season in Pittsburgh in which he averaged 18.8 points and 4.6 rebounds per game, shooting 45.4% from the field, 42.1% from beyond the arc (on 261 attempts) and 66.9% from the free throw line. He hit the 20-point mark 14 times last season — erupting for a career-high 41 points in a win against Louisville.

He earned first-team All-ACC honors following his final season in Pittsburgh, setting numerous program records, including three points in a season (110) and three pointers in a game (nine, against West Virginia in December).

In two seasons as a Panther, Hinson averaged 16.8 points, 5.3 rebounds and one assist per game on 44/40/67 shooting splits — showing a knack for hitting deep or contested three-point attempts.

Blake Hinson celebrates a 3-pointer during Pitt's ACC Tournament game vs. Georgia Tech in Greensboro, N.C. on March 8, 2023. (Mitchell Northam / Pittsburgh Sports Now)

Blake Hinson celebrates a 3-pointer during Pitt’s ACC Tournament game vs. Georgia Tech in Greensboro, N.C. on March 8, 2023. (Mitchell Northam / Pittsburgh Sports Now)

He impressed at the NBA G League camp last month, culminating in a game-high 18 points on 7-of -6 shooting, along with a team-high six rebounds and two assists. Hinson’s performance helped Team Two take down Team Three, 90-78.

Hinson started his collegiate career at Ole Miss, achieving moderate success during his two seasons in Oxford, Miss., but he transferred to Iowa State ahead of the 2021 season. After not seeing the court during his two seasons as a Hawkeye, he transferred to Pitt and emerged as one of the best players in the ACC and one of the most clutch players in college basketball.

There’s still a long path ahead for Hinson as he’ll compete for the Lakers in the Summer League this summer, but a strong showing could lead to a potential impact sooner rather than later.

Sandy Schall, Coldwell Banker
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Michael
Michael
24 days ago

Couple of editorial corrections- Iowa State is the Cyclones not the Hawkeyes. 7 of 6 shooting would be rather special.

As for Blake, I am willing to bet he has a productive career in the NBA. His only mistake was not having LeBron as a father.

Eli
Eli
24 days ago

Best of luck to him. That guy was a lot of fun to watch these last couple seasons.

Agent Zero
Agent Zero
24 days ago

He’s way better than Bronny by a long shot..

Marty
Marty
24 days ago

Bronny should be the new definition of entitlement. How can anyone take him seriously averaging 4 pts a game? He should be at Duquesne or a mid level college instead the Lakers drafted him to keep his dad happy. What a world we live in.

Young
Young
24 days ago

I wish him well. He will be missed for presence and leadership,

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