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Charlotte Hornets sign P.J. Hairston to rookie-scale contract

The Charlotte Hornets have signed rookie P.J. Hairston, the former North Carolina shooting guard they acquired in a draft-night trade with the Miami Heat.

The Heat chose Hairston 26th overall before dealing his draft rights to the Hornets. Under the NBA’s rookie pay scale for first-round picks, Hairston will get a guarantee the next two seasons totaling about $2 million. The Hornets would then hold two one-season options on Hairston before he’d become a restricted free agent.

The Hornets previously signed the No. 9 pick, former Indiana forward Noah Vonleh. Hairston originally retained an agent who hadn’t been certified by the NBA Players Association. That situation had to be resolved before the Hornets could sign Hairston.

A 6-6 shooting guard, Hairston played in the NBA’s Development League last season after being ruled ineligible by the NCAA. Hairston averaged 21.8 points and shot 45 percent from the field and 36 percent from the 3-point line for the D-League’s Texas Legends.

With Hairston’s signing, the Hornets now have 14 players under contract with training camp a little more than a month away in Asheville. Coach Steve Clifford has said he’d like to see the team sign a third center.

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