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Pacers sign Nate Hinton to Exhibit-10 deal

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With less than three weeks until training camp, Indiana has 20 players under contract.

2021 Las Vegas Summer League - Dallas Mavericks v Sacramento Kings Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images

The Indiana Pacers have signed 22-year-old guard Nate Hinton to an Exhibit-10 deal, the team announced Tuesday.

Hinton, who signed a two-way contract with the Dallas Mavericks last season after going undrafted out of the University of Houston, where he was named to the Second Team All-AAC in 2020, has familiarity not only with Rick Carlisle but also former Cougar teammate, DeJon Jarreau.

With limited practice time and a shortened training camp, the past year didn’t offer a lot of opportunities for rookies like Hinton, as he — not unlike Indiana’s 2020 second-round draft pick, Cassius Stanley — was limited to only 93 total minutes for the Mavericks, averaging two points per game and not much else from the perspective of box-score contributions.

Prior to Summer League, Hinton accepted the qualifying offer to return to Dallas on a one-year, two-way contract; however, after nearly tallying more turnovers (14) than made field goals (16), he was waived on August 27, with the Mavericks instead signing Jaquori McLaughlin as his replacement.

Unless Kelan Martin is waived prior to the start of the regular season, when his $1.7 million salary becomes fully guaranteed, there won’t be room for Hinton on the 15-man standard roster or on two-way contract, given that both flex spots are already filled with Duane Washington Jr. and Jarreau. In that regard, though there is arguably more pressing need at third-string point guard, it should be interesting to monitor if the team’s priorities for the final roster spot are at all altered by T.J. Warren’s murky availability.

Either way, for a team that struggled on the glass last season, it can’t hurt to add a 6-foot-5, 210-pound guard to the team’s development pipeline, seeing as how he pulled down 8.7 rebounds per game during his sophomore season at Houston and averaged 10.6 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 1.2 steals with the Santa Cruz Warriors in the G League bubble.

Joining Keifer Sykes and Terry Taylor as players on Exhibit-10 deals, Hinton will be eligible for a $50K bonus if he sticks with the Mad Ants, where he could potentially reteam with Jarreau, for at least 60 days.