Advanced Stats Prove Bam Adebayo Among Best Defenders in NBA'
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The Miami Heat are off to a strong start to the 2019-20 NBA season and much of the credit should go to big man Bam Adebayo.

According to advanced statistics from NBA Math, Adebayo is playing at a level similar to that of many of the very best defenders in the entire league.

NBA Math ranks Adebayo (49.57) second only to 2018-19 NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo (53.30) in defensive points saved (DPS). He ranks higher than 2018-19 Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert (47.33) and six-time All-Star Anthony Davis (45.49).

Perhaps even more surprising than his defensive numbers, Adebayo ranks eighth overall in total points added (TPA). He’s currently right behind many of the league’s top stars in Antetokounmpo, Luka Doncic, James Harden, LeBron James, Karl-Anthony Towns, Damian Lillard and Davis.

NBA Math’s TPA model looks “at both defensive and offensive effectiveness on a per-possession basis while also incorporating the amount of playing time the contributor in question receives.” Adebayo’s TPA ranking shows that the Heat made the right decision to keep him rather than trade him for a star this past offseason.

Adebayo is currently averaging career highs across the board with 13.9 points, 10.5 rebounds, 4.6 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.5 blocks in 32.3 minutes of action per game. He is also knocking down a career-best 58.8 percent of his shots from the field.

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Omar is a freelance writer who has followed the NBA for more than 30 years. Prior to the Internet, he devoured every reading material he could find on the game from newspaper articles to books and magazines. He became a Heat fan the moment they acquired Tim Hardaway and his killer crossover, and lamented not seeing him and Alonzo Mourning win a championship. Seeing Dwyane Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh play in Miami was a surreal moment for him and more so after they validated the Decision with back-to-back championships. He is ecstatic to cover Miami basketball for Heat Nation.