Jarreau, who went undrafted out of Houston following a Final Four season in which he was named Defensive Player of the Year in the American Athletic Conference and the Most Outstanding Player in the Midwest Regional, proved to be an intriguing mixture of attack, versatility, and efficiency for Miami’s Summer League team, averaging 11.6 points, 6.6 rebounds, 5.8 assists, and 1.4 steals per game in Las Vegas while shooting 47 percent overall and 36 percent from deep.
With excellent size for position at 6-foot-5, the 23-year-old defensive pest impressed not only with his feel for how closely to pressure and gap the ball in the open floor and while skirting screens but also with his potential to guard multiple positions. Here, for instance, Jarreau veers into and carves out space on the glass against the roll-man on one end of floor before later flashing some wiggle while attacking the switch at the other.
Offensively, he’ll need to continue demonstrating proof of product away from the ball, as he attempted only 11 total threes for Miami with just a few coming off the catch after shooting 38-of-130 over his final two college seasons; however, for a team like the Pacers, who could use added, emergency depth at point guard, Jarreau showed some possible upside as a low-turnover playmaker, particularly when throwing cross-court darts in motion or slithering into the paint and making basic reads out of the pick-and-pop with changes of speed.
“With DeJon, it’s just his makeup,” Heat assistant coach and summer league head coach Malik Allen told the Miami Herald. “He finds a way to put his imprint on the game ... He has the vision and it’s just a matter of trying to harness the things that we see so he can keep growing and getting better as an NBA point guard. Someone who handles the ball. Because I think the vision is there, the understanding of where the ball should get is there and he has got to just keep growing as a floor general.”
Prior to this most recent reporting from Agness, Miami was said to have interest in signing Jarreau, but it was unclear whether the offer was a two-way contract or an Exhibit-10 deal.
With the Pacers withdrawing the qualifying offer to Cassius Stanley, Jarreau will occupy the second two-way spot alongside rookie shooting guard Duane Washington Jr., which means Stanley will most likely be in search of a new team after being drafted 54th overall by the Pacers in the 2020 NBA Draft.
According to a report from the Indy Star published on Sunday morning, small but mighty floor general Keifer Sykes is expected to have the “inside track” on third-string point guard, with the two-way spot that last night was said to be committed to Jarreau.
For what it’s worth, The Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson seemed to confirm that initial report from Agness, tweeting “Heat told Jarreau it wanted him but Pacers swooped in as Heat mulled what to offer.”
Heat told Jarreau it wanted him but Pacers swooped in as Heat mulled what to offer. Heat told Marcus Garrett they're interested in giving him a 2 way, but then he changed agents, delaying process. If Garrett gets one 2 way, Heat could let camp competition determine other two way https://t.co/swtY1v2xcz— Barry Jackson (@flasportsbuzz) August 22, 2021
Sykes, while lacking in Jarreau’s size and length, played a valuable role for the Pacers in Las Vegas, allowing Chris Duarte to play on the ball as well as off. With a steadier hand, Sykes’ per game numbers were underwhelming (8.0 points, 1.8 rebounds, and 2.0 assists while shooting 54 percent overall and 43 percent from three), but the combination of his more well-developed shot and reads arguably makes him more plug-and-play should a call-up be necessary in a system that values team-ball from the guard position. Overall, it’s a discussion of readiness and experience versus versatility and upside. Keep an eye on this.