Miami Heat’s Bam Adebayo Worried About Licking, Sweating When NBA Returns

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While Miami Heat  forward Bam Adebayo wants to get back on the court to finish the 2019-20 season, he’s expressing some concern about how the personal hygiene of NBA players could be a safety issue.

The Associated Press offered comments from athletes from different sports regarding a return to action. In the case of Adebayo, he says that common player routines may draw greater attention due to all the public health steps currently being taken.

“Some players like Steve Nash used to lick his hands,” Adebayo said. “Some people still have that in their routine. Some people wipe the sweat off their face and put it on the ball. It’s going to be weird how they try to control it, because we have to touch each other. And then you have to worry about the family members that we may be touching.”

At the time of the NBA’s suspension of play on March 11, Adebayo was having the best season of his three-year NBA career. In 65 games, he was averaging 16.2 points, 10.5 rebounds, 5.1 assists, 1.3 blocks and 1.2 steals per contest.

Adebayo’s numbers have largely seen a major uptick during the 2019-20 campaign and have been part of the Heat’s resurgence into being playoff contenders with a 41-24 record.

In June 2017, the Heat selected Adebayo with the 14th overall pick in that year’s draft, with his efforts on both sides of the court this season showing that the selection is turning into a wise investment.

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Brad Sullivan is a freelance writer for, 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.