James Ennis Traded to Miami Heat: Scouting Report and Analysis

Jonathan Wasserman@@NBADraftWassNBA Lead WriterJune 28, 2013

LOS ANGELES, CA - DECEMBER 18:  James Ennis #11 of the Long Beach State 49ers drives around Kyle Andeerson #5  of the UCLA Bruins at Pauley Pavilion on December 18, 2012 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

With the No. 50 pick of the 2013 NBA draft, the Atlanta Hawks selected James Ennis from Long Beach State University and subsequently traded him to the Miami Heat.

Here's everything you need to know about Ennis:

James Ennis has gone from junior college standout to mid-major star to potential NBA-draft sleeper.

He received a well-deserved invite to this year's NBA Draft Combine, following a season in which he turned a lot of heads out West at Long Beach State. Ennis was named the Big West Player of the Year and had been one of the trendier names throughout the predraft process.

Ennis averaged 16.5 points, 6.7 rebounds and 1.8 steals as a senior at Long Beach State.

Physical Tools

At 6'7'' with a 6'11.5'' wingspan, Ennis has the size and length measurements of your standard NBA wing.

Ennis is an explosive athlete in the open floor, with the hops that allow him to soar over helpless defenders.

Now check it out at full speed:

Ennis weighed in at 200 pounds, though he appears to have the frame of a young NBA player who just hasn't fully developed.

Attacking, Finishing Around the Rim

Though Ennis lacks the handle to shake east and west off the dribble, he can attack the basket moving north and south. And when he gets there, he's reliable, efficient and flexible.

Ennis has the athleticism and springs to finish over defenders, but he also has the body control and dexterity to finish around them.

Ennis shot 49 percent from the floor in both years at LBSU, a good number for a small forward. At the next level, he should be a slashing target off the ball and someone who can hit a driving lane if one opens up.


Ennis has been a fairly dangerous three-point shooter over the past two years. He converted 35 percent of his attempts in back-to-back seasons, making 1.3 and 1.7 per game, respectively.

When his feet are set, Ennis has a really good-looking stroke. He gets good elevation with a textbook follow-through.

Most of his makes come off spot-up opportunities. If Ennis improves his handle and ability to separate without jeopardizing balance, he's got the shot-making skills to become a nice perimeter scoring weapon.

He took more than four shots per game as a senior than he did as a junior, so he definitely made strides in this department.


Given Ennis' length, athleticism and size for a wing, he's a defensive asset on the perimeter. 

He makes it difficult for opposing backcourts to operate with comfort. Ennis disrupts offensive sets by getting into passing lanes and making plays on the ball.

At the next level, Ennis could be a guy a coach feels inclined to put in and give his defensive unit a spark. He's got the defensive playmaking ability to force turnovers and convert them into points the other way.


Ennis' ball-handling skills could use a little tightening up. He's not too creative off the dribble and lacks the shot-creating ability to pose as a one-on-one threat at the next level.

He averaged three turnovers a game as a junior, and though his usage rate rose dramatically, that's still a high number for a non-guard.

Ennis will have to prove to coaches he's a reliable catch-and-shooter. Athletic defenders who can shoot are always in need, but without the ability to consistently create, his jumper will need to be money.

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