Houston committed to this deal in the midst of a two-pronged cap-clearing maneuver. Also on Thursday, the Rockets sent K.J. McDaniels to the Brooklyn Nets for only cash considerations. Houston can now pursue veterans that are bought out or waived by other teams.
Los Angeles picks up a low-risk player in Tyler Ennis. The point guard is on the final year of his rookie contract after Houston declined his team option for 2017-18. If he plays well, the Lakers will likely work to re-sign him. If not, he will be money off of the books this offseason.
Tyler Ennis is on his fourth team in three seasons. He started his career playing only eight games for the Phoenix Suns, the team that drafted him 18th overall in 2014. Phoenix dealt him to the Milwaukee Bucks midway through his rookie year. Ennis spent a season-and-a-half there.
Milwaukee traded Ennis to Houston alst September in exchange for Michael Beasley. Ennis played 31 games for the Rockets this year. He averaged 1.9 points and 1.1 assists in 6.3 minutes per game.
Those numbers are a sharp decline from his first two seasons. Ennis averaged 4.1 points and 2.1 assists in 13.5 minutes per game over that span.
Tyler Ennis is a good outside shooter and distributor. However, he is turnover-prone and has yet to fully adjust to the NBA. He may be an example of a one-and-done that entered the NBA Draft too early. 2016-17 would be his senior season at Syracuse had he stayed.
Ennis will slot into Huertas’ role as a non-rotation point guard. D’Angelo Russell and Jordan Clarkson (who the Lakers picked 46th overall in the same draft as Ennis) take up most of the Lakers’ point guard minutes.
However, there’s still a chance to carve out enough playing time to make an impact. Due to the Lakers’s struggles since December (9-29 over that span), the team has been involved in many sizable losses.
With 24 games remaining in their regular season, it seems that the losses will continue. With those losses comes plenty of garbage time. When he’s a free agent this summer, it will be these moments that Ennis can use to prove he still has something to offer teams.
Will Tyler Ennis prove to be a steal for the Los Angeles Lakers? Will he be gone as quickly as he arrived?