Miami Heat: Justise Winslow Summer League Review

By Aidan Setter

The NBA’s Summer League is a time for young rookie players to prove why they were drafted or why they should’ve been drafted. For Winslow, it was to prove to everyone why he was selected with the tenth pick by the Miami Heat last month. He needed to prove to the Heat coaches, front office, and fans that he was the right choice which he did. Up until Wednesday when he played in only seven minutes, Winslow was averaging about 15ppg to go alongside a nice tally of rebounds, assists, and stellar defense. Winslow was also getting to the free throw line as if he was Dwyane Wade. He has been playing the way Heat fans expected him to and has probably made some teams frustrated as to why they passed up on him. This is my review of all the aspects of his game broken into several categories that include; offense, defense, and the eye test. Lets get started.

Offense

One can obviously tell that Winslow is doing something right when he is putting up the offensive number he has. The thing is, most of those points have come off of free throws. This isn’t bad because it shows he has an aggressive mindset but it does show he has work to do when it comes to improving his shot. Winslow has been shooting 34% from the field and 12.5% from behind the arc which isn’t to be desired. Coming into the draft everyone knew he had to improve his jump shooting which can be overlooked for the most part because of his aggressiveness and ability to make it to the free throw line.

Another aspect of Winslow’s offense that has been pleasant to watch is his ability to take the ball up the court. Miami had him do this during a game in which most of the veterans were resting. Winslow showed he can run an offense pretty well and showed promise of being able to do it down the line like Wade has done his entire career.

Defense

This is Winslow’s bread and butter. He is a monster defender who always seems to go after loose balls and keeping the opposition from scoring. Every time one turns on the game it feels like he is always trapping the ball and forcing turnovers. This comes as no surprise to the Heat faithful because this is the most notable attribute of his game. He plays defense so well that it may remind many fans of a young Wade; the way he used his athleticism and skill to make sure he didn’t get scored on. It is nice to see him defending so well because that is how he will make the most impact during the upcoming season.

The Eye Test

Without even looking at stats it appears that Winslow has been the most dominant player on the court during every game. Just the way he walks on the court can back that up. Winslow looks and plays confidently. He wants the ball at the end of the game and plays smart. He rebounds the ball well for a wing player, defends, and creates his own offense. He may have a few things to work on but no one is perfect. He is a player who has won on the largest stage of college basketball. He knows what it takes to win and has been coached by winners. This is shown by how he is so valuable because he doesn’t try to outplay his own skill. He plays within the offensive and defensive system and doesn’t make plays that will impact the team in a negative way.

So far he has appeared to be the perfect selection for Miami and shows an amazing amount of potential for the upcoming season.