Bam Adebayo on Miami Heat's 'simple plan' to defend Joel Embiid in upcoming series - Heat Nation

Bam Adebayo on Miami Heat’s ‘simple plan’ to defend Joel Embiid in upcoming series

Joel Embiid and Bam Adebayo Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Miami Heat star big man Bam Adebayo revealed how the team plans to guard Philadelphia 76ers superstar Joel Embiid in the second round of the NBA playoffs.

The Heat beat the Atlanta Hawks in five games in the first round, and they will now match up with the Sixers, who beat the Toronto Raptors in six games in their first-round series.

It’s hard to disagree with Adebayo’s assessment, as Embiid is one of the most dominant players in the league. Adebayo will almost certainly draw the initial assignment on Embiid, but he seems to expect his team to help him out all series.

The Heat are one of the best defensive teams in the league, as they were No. 4 in the NBA in defensive rating during the regular season.

Miami shut down All-Star guard Trae Young in the first round of the playoffs, but Embiid is a much different player.

During the 2021-22 regular season, Embiid averaged 30.6 points, 11.7 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game while shooting 49.9 percent from the field and 37.1 percent from beyond the arc.

The Heat will have to send double teams at Embiid, and they may be able to get away with leaving wing Matisse Thybulle open when he’s on the floor, as the 25-year-old shot just 31.3 percent from 3-point range in the regular season.

If the Heat can slow Embiid in this series, they will have a good chance of making the Eastern Conference Finals and continuing their playoff run this season. Miami is looking to make it back to the NBA Finals after the team made it there in the 2019-20 season and lost to the Los Angeles Lakers.

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