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Blake Hinson has a chance to have a decent career in the NBA

Blake Hinson, the Pitt Panthers’ former small forward, didn’t get picked in the two rounds of the 2024 NBA Draft.

Instead, Hinson signed a two-way contract with the Los Angeles Lakers at the draft’s conclusion on Thursday and will probably begin his career with their G League (minor leagues). The Lakers may have been lucky to sign Hinson, especially after using their second-round pick to select Bronny James. That’s right, a conspiracy theory came true. LeBron James, the defacto general manager in Los Angeles, will play with his son in the twilight of his career. James’s son declared for the NBA Draft after playing one season at USC, averaging 4.8 points per game.

Nepotism is a thing.

Anyway, I’m not here to dunk on Bronny. He’s 19. It’s not his fault he’s a nepo baby. It’s not his fault his dad is LeBron. I hope the kid does well. After all, it’s like they say: It’s not what you know (or can do). It’s who you know (or are related to). I can’t blame LeBron, either. I like him. He was hilarious in the movie, Trainwreck. Also, he might be the greatest NBA player of all time. He’s factually its all-time leading scorer. If I’m someone with James’s resume–all-time leading scorer, four-time NBA champion, four-time NBA MVP and four-time NBA Finals MVP–and I was in the position to give my child the best possible chance to succeed in life, I can’t say I wouldn’t wield my power and influence in much the same way.

I just happen to think Hinson will be the better player. I’m a big Pitt fan, so maybe I’m biased, but have you seen that man–he’ll be 25 in December, so he qualifies more than Bronny at the moment–shoot a three?

Women’s basketball phenom, Caitlin Clark, is known for pulling up and firing off threes from the logo, but Hinson spent his college career doing the same thing. Not only did Hinson have range during his college days, but he was prolific. Hinson connected on 207 three-pointers during his two seasons at Pitt, a number good enough for 79th all-time in ACC history. Hinson set the Panthers’ record for most threes in a single season when he made 110 a year ago. Hinson spent his first two seasons with Ole Miss before transferring to Iowa State. He sat out two years there before transferring to Pitt in time for the 2022/2023 season. Hinson made a total of 298 threes during his four full seasons of college basketball, a total that would have ranked him 15 all-time had he spent his entire college career in the ACC. Hinson’s new head coach, J.J. Redick, is the ACC’s all-time leading three-pointer scorer with 457.

Back to Hinson.

Hinson can pull up and fire off shots from the logo, and he can step back and hit threes with someone in his face.

Hinson is the ultimate sharp-shooter. Sure, he has an inside game, which may or may not translate to the NBA, but there is no doubt his outside shot will play at the top level.

Again, maybe I’m wearing blue-and-gold colored glasses when gushing over Hinson, but I really do think he’ll be a decent NBA player.

For all I know, Blake Hinson may have a better time playing with Bronny James than his dad does.


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