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Miami Heat Veterans Shower Bam Adebayo With Praise Amidst Breakout Season
- Updated: November 29, 2019
In fact, many fans and experts would likely agree that he is one of the players most responsible for the team’s 12-5 start to the season. Turns out, several of his teammates feel the same way.
In a recent Sports Illustrated profile of the third-year pro, several of his teammates offered incredible praise of Adebayo and his contributions to the team.
There’s no doubt that Adebayo has shown an ability to be dynamic this season. After the trade that sent Hassan Whiteside to the Portland Trail Blazers, it was assumed that Adebayo would step in as the team’s new starting center.
In that role, he has averaged 14.5 points, 10.4 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game, all career marks. While the scoring and rebounding averages should not come as much of a surprise, the 4.5 assists per game have shown that he has a lot more to offer on the offensive side than previously thought.
Still, Adebayo has impressed the most on the defensive front. His teammates know how well he has served as Miami’s defensive anchor.
“Bam has been doing a great job defensively,” Heat big man Kelly Olynyk said. “He guards one through five, does whatever you ask of him. Off-ball, on-ball, pick-and-rolls, everything. His skill has always been there.”
It’s not just his fellow players who know what the University of Kentucky product means to the team. Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra recognizes it as well.
“Offensively, we’re running the offense through [Adebayo] more and more,” Spoelstra said. “We started that process last year, but the last three months of the season, he’s really improved his playmaking and his passing. …It seems like every month I can give him something more on his plate and he’s been able to take on all of that.”
Beyond that, it seems Adebayo has grown to fit in perfectly with the lauded Heat culture that heavily emphasizes hard work and a commitment to excellence and success on the court.
“Bam is all about finding other ways to impact winning,” Spoelstra said. “With his work ethic and team attitude, he’s only going to continue to get better.”
Adebayo still has a lot of room to grow and improve as a player. That fact should only make his teammates, and Heat fans, all the more excited about his future.