Bam Adebayo on his DPOY case: ‘At this point, I’m the only one making those eye-popping plays’

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Miami Heat big man Bam Adebayo offered some simple reasoning as to why he should win this season’s Defensive Player of the Year award in the NBA.

Adebayo has developed into a powerful on-court presence for the Heat during his five seasons with the team. That tenure started with two years in which he was primarily a bench player, but he has since evolved into a starter and is now a crucial player for the Heat on both ends of the floor.

This season, Adebayo is averaging a double-double with 19.0 points and 10.3 rebounds per game. He’s also averaging 3.5 assists and 1.5 steals per contest.

That sort of all-around production is exactly what the Heat were hoping for when they selected Adebayo as the 14th overall pick of the 2017 NBA Draft. It also explains why the team invested a lucrative contract extension in the 24-year-old standout.

Adebayo’s performance this season is just one of the reasons why the Heat continue to hold the best record in the Eastern Conference with just 12 games left before the playoffs.

While Adebayo has certainly made a name for himself, he’ll be competing for this season’s Defensive Player of the Year award against multiple other players. Among them is Utah Jazz star Rudy Gobert, who’s captured the award in three of the last four seasons.

Another factor that could work against Adebayo is the fact that he has only appeared in 45 games this season.

Since Adebayo has no control over the voting process, his top priority is surely to help the Heat win games. On Friday night, the team will close out a long stretch at home against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

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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.