Erik Spoelstra dishes on how Bam Adebayo has been impacting Miami Heat while sidelined'
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Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra revealed how Bam Adebayo has been impacting Miami even while he is out of the lineup with a thumb injury.

Adebayo has been practicing as he continues his rehab from surgery on his thumb.

“We’re just happy that he’s been able to basically work since three days after the surgery,” Spoelstra said. “He’s basically been doing everything conditioning, getting up and down the court. From that standpoint, he’s been very involved, and I think it’s been really good for him, his spirits, his positivity. It’s been great for us having around, especially on this last road trip. He’s still leading and encouraging guys. When you see him working, it’s hard not to just get encouraged and also inspired.”

The Heat certainly have missed Adebayo’s presence on the court in games, as he is easily one of the team’s best scorers and the anchor of Miami’s defense.

In the 2021-22 season, Adebayo is averaging 18.7 points, 10.2 rebounds and 3.2 assists per game this season while shooting 51.9 percent from the field.

The University of Kentucky product was recently touted by one NBA general manager as the best big man in the NBA behind Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic.

The Heat have been able to play through injuries to several key players this season, but the teams certainly will be excited to have Adebayo back in the lineup at some point in the 2021-22 campaign.

The Heat are 25-15 this season, and they’ve gone 15-7 in the 22 games that Adebayo has missed. Miami currently holds the No. 3 spot in the Eastern Conference as it nears the halfway point of the season.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.