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Yo, LeBron. Have you been watching James Ennis? Sure hope so. This kid has (summer league) game.
Ennis had another strong outing against the Pacers, registering 17 points, four rebounds and two assists on 6-of-13 shooting. His 2-of-8 clip from downtown reads like an eyesore, but he more than made up for it by staying in constant attack mode.
Perhaps more importantly, Ennis' strong performance came on the heels of a poor one. He went 1-of-6 from the field for four points in his previous game against the Detroit Pistons. He was cruising along until that point, so it was interesting to see how he would respond.
Breaking: He responded well.
The 24-year-old Ennis, who spent last year overseas, has emerged as a go-to scorer and reliable defender. Defense is rarely played during the summer league, but he's blocked the occasional shot and hounded everyone he's up against.
His off-ball movements have been intricate and effective if you watch closely. He's so damn active, never once letting his defender relax. Basically, he's been everything the Heat need him to be—a sleeper, just like they planned more than a year ago, per ESPN.com's Tom Haberstroh:
But if we’re being honest, the Heat didn’t have 2013-14 on their minds when they drafted Ennis...This was a long play and a cheap way -- reminder: second-round picks are not guaranteed -- for the Heat to have Battier/Miller insurance, reel in a player that they liked and, perhaps, stash him overseas like they did with recent draftees Jarvis Varnado and Justin Hamilton.
It’s possible that the Heat heard whispers that Ennis appealed to another team or would’ve picked elsewhere as a free agent where he might see more playing time. But Ennis is under the Heat’s control now, and the Heat are high on him.
That's some foresight. And Ennis is some player.
Miami, it seems, has more than enough reasons to remain high on him.