Don’t piss off the Canadians.
That is the message Tyler Ennis and his fellow Canuck Andrew Wiggins have sent in recent days.
On the same day he was snubbed for the McDonald’s All-American Game, the Syracuse-bound Ennis went off for a school-record 53 points in a 116-65 rout of Eastern (N.J.) at the Scholastic Play by Play Classic Thursday at Burlington (N.J.) Life Center Academy.
The 6-foot-2 Ennis learned shortly before the game that he had been left off the roster for the McDonald’s Game April 3 at Chicago’s United Center.
“We were pissed, our team was pissed,” St. Benedict’s Prep coach Mark Taylor, whose team is ranked No. 5 by USA Today, told SNY.tv. “Tyler was upset.”
He added: “Our team said, ‘Listen, Tyler, go off tonight. We are giving you the ball and go show everyone you can do this for everyone tonight. You’re the type of player who is all about the team.’ Our team was all about Tyler tonight.”
A week ago, Wiggins, Ennis’s CIA Bounce teammate, poured in 57 points in response to a controversial SI.com article about him.
There has been some question about whether Ennis and some of his fellow Canadians are actually fifth-year players, which are not allowed in the McDonald’s Game.
But numerous other Canadians have made the game in the past, including Anthony Bennett last year.
“If they were in, Tyler should be in,” Taylor said.
Ennis, who was chosen for the Jordan Brand Classic April 13, scored 24 points in the first half and 25 in the third quarter, according to the Philly Inquirer. He made five 3-pointers and went 13-of-16 from the line.
“He was the best player I played against in all my years,” Eastern’s Devon Bell, who scored 24 points in the loss, told the Philly Inquirer.
Tyrell Green added 18 points for St. Benedict’s and Isaiah Briscoe had 16.
Taylor said he was “frustrated” by the McDonald’s announcement.
“Syracuse is getting a great player,” Taylor said. “He can do it all. He can score. He can distribute. He can defend. He is a complete player.
“I think he’s the best guard in the country. It’s frustrating.”
***For SNY.tv.’s exclusive video documentary on Canadian point guard Tyler Ennis, click here.
Photo: St. Benedict’s Prep