Former NBA champion demands Bam Adebayo to average 26 points, 14 rebounds and 3 blocks a night'
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ESPN NBA analyst and former NBA center Kendrick Perkins made demands for Miami Heat center Bam Adebayo if the team wants to win an NBA title this season.

“If the Heat is trying to win the championship, he’s going to have to elevate his game even more,” Perkins said of Adebayo. “I’m talking about a 25-, 26- point scorer a night, 14 rebounds, 3 blocks. That’s the Bam we’ve all been waiting on, and I’m not sure he’s capable of being that guy.”

Adebayo receives a lot of criticism from the national media, even when he is playing well. Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra pointed this out after the team’s win against the Phoenix Suns, saying that Adebayo carries more responsibility than any player that he’s ever coached.

The Heat are off to a slow start this season, going 7-8 through their first 15 games, but it hasn’t been because Adebayo isn’t producing.

The one-time All-Star is averaging 19.1 points, 9.1 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 0.8 blocks per game while shooting 53.1 percent from the field. With the Heat dealing with a ton of injuries early on this season, Adebayo has been a steady presence for the team down low.

Omer Yurtseven is expected to be out indefinitely after undergoing surgery on his injured ankle, which leaves Adebayo and Dewayne Dedmon as the primary options for Miami at the center position.

While Perkins may want Adebayo to score more, the Heat center clearly knows his role in the offense isn’t always to put up the most points.

When the Heat are healthy, Jimmy Butler, Tyler Herro, Victor Oladipo, Kyle Lowry and others have major roles in the offense scoring the ball. Adebayo will as well, but he doesn’t need to score nearly 30 points a night for the Heat to succeed.

For example, Miami was one win away from the NBA Finals last season, and Adebayo finished that regular season averaging 19.1 points per game.

There’s no doubt that every player on the Heat can continue to improve and expand his game, but Perkins’ criticism of Adebayo seems a little unfair. For a player that is asked to lead the defense and be a playmaker from the center position, Adebayo is playing his role for Miami about as well as the team could ask.

The Heat take on the Washington Wizards on Friday night as they look to get themselves back to .500 on 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.