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Is Jordan Hill an early candidate for Most Improved Player of the Year?

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The Los Angeles Lakers have shown early success as the season continues to unfold. At 5-7, the Lakers are still exploring different rotations and lineups that will enhance their chances of winning. One thing that is indisputable is the outstanding play from Jordan Hill and the effect he’s had on this team.

Hill was acquired from the Houston Rockets via trade in the 2011-12 season in exchange for Derek Fisher. In his first two season in Los Angeles, Hill had a difficult time seeking minutes on the court due to both coaching and personnel changes. Then, in early 2013, Hill was forced to sit out the majority of the season with a hip injury.

As he makes a name for himself, Hill has suddenly become a Laker fan favorite with his effort on the offensive and defensive sides of the court. The former No. 8 overall pick in the 2009 NBA Draft is starting to feel comfortable as the season moves forward, averaging 10.4 points per game while grabbing 8.4 rebounds per contest. Since being placed in the starting lineup, Hill has averaged 18.7 ppg, 12.0 rpg and 1.7 bpg.

Hill credits his recent success to the extended minutes that he has been receiving. The more he plays, the more confidence he builds.

If Hill can maintain this level of play for the rest of the season then we are looking at a potential candidate to win the Most Improved Player of the Year award, which – more importantly – will elevate the Lakers’ chances of winning on the basketball court.

This is an article by Eugene Jones. You can follow him on Twitter: @Hugo_Jones1

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