The Atlanta Hawks are hopefully about to welcome Danilo Gallinari back from his injured ankle. This is going to raise some rotation questions and the main one is will Solomon Hill be able to keep a place inside the rotation.
Hill signed with the Hawks as a free agent over the offseason to a one-year $2.1 million contract. He has averaged 4.9 points, 2.8 rebounds, and 0.8 assists in 18.6 minutes per game. He has played all 13 games and shot the ball at 35.5 percent from the floor, 35.4 percent from deep, and has not missed any of his free throws.
The problem is that Hill has had one or two good periods for the entire season. As a seven-year veteran, he is making rookie mistakes with the ball. He was good for a quarter against Gordon Hayward when no one else could stop him but you can’t stay in the rotation on one good quarter at the start of the month.
Why the Atlanta Hawks need Danilo Galliari, not Solomon Hill.
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Gallinari has the ability to carry an offense. He reminded the NBA last season how good he was with the OKC Thunder. He shot the ball at 40.5 percent from deep last season, averaging 18.7 points per game. He was a huge factor as to why the Thunder were a playoff team.
The Hawks have struggled from deep since the fourth game of the season. Opposition teams have been able to double team Trae Young because the Hawks have not had a consistent threat from deep. However, it goes deeper than that.
Gallinari is a leader on and off the court. He has an uncanny knack for hitting the shot or making the play that his team needs. He looks for his offense and does not settle for a 3-point shot if it is not there. He also has the ability to get to the line to stop the opposition’s momentum and is top-50 all-time in free throw percentage.
Gallinari may also unlock some game-time for rookie Onyeka Okongwu. Currently, the rookie does not have anyone who can space the floor when he comes on the court. He will also have a mentor in Gallinari to help guide him as he tries to make his way into the league.
So the answer to the question of whether Hill should keep some time in the rotation is a solid no. In fact, when Gallinari returns I would not be surprised to see the Hawks waive him and get a more effective big man.