Avery Bradley explains how Erik Spoelstra has unlocked Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo

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Prior to his first game with the Miami Heat, Avery Bradley offered high praise for the connection between head coach Erik Spoelstra and two of the team’s stars, Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo.

Bradley was signed during the free-agency period last month by the Heat and has noticed during his short tenure with the team that the leadership and basketball intellect of Butler and Adebayo derive from Spoelstra giving them freedom to play their games.

“I mean, their IQ is absolutely amazing,” Bradley said of Butler and Adebayo standing as the Heat’s leaders on the court. “I think a lot of that stems from the coach. Coach Spo, he gives the players free will to go out there and coach each other and just play free and fun.

“And I feel whenever you’re playing for a coach like that, that is able to fuel you with that positive reinforcement, it makes the game easier for you. You can just go out there and play the game.”

The 30-year-old Bradley played for the Los Angeles Lakers last season, where he got to see a similar situation play out. Lakers head coach Frank Vogel relied on the duo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis and was rewarded with the Lakers’ first title in a decade.

Bradley is hoping for a repeat of that effort this season with the Heat. His first official chance to help make that happen comes on Wednesday night, when the team opens up the 2020-21 season with a road game against the Orlando Magic.

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Brad Sullivan is a freelance writer for HeatNation.com, having been an avid fan of NBA basketball for more than four decades. During that time, he's watched the Heat evolve from gestation period to expansion team all the way to three-time NBA champions. He'll follow their quest toward again reaching those lofty heights, and do so by offering some perspective along the way.