Bam Adebayo expresses displeasure with only making All-Defensive Second Team

3 Min Read

For the fourth straight season, Miami Heat center Bam Adebayo has made the NBA’s All-Defensive Second Team.

While that would be a phenomenal accomplishment for a vast majority of the league, Adebayo doesn’t seem too thrilled with it. He’s got bigger goals in mind.

“Still work to be done,” Adebayo said following the Heat’s shootaround session on Wednesday. “I still want the DPOY and First Team.”

The University of Kentucky product hasn’t ever been shy to talk about his defensive abilities. Earlier this year, he even said that he believes he should’ve been named Defensive Player of the Year in both the 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons.

Minnesota Timberwolves big man Rudy Gobert won the award in 2021 as a member of the Utah Jazz, while Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart won the award last year.

This year, Memphis Grizzlies center Jaren Jackson Jr. won the award. Adebayo finished in fifth place in the voting. It marks the fourth straight year that Adebayo has finished in the top five for the award.

This regular season, Adebayo averaged 1.2 steals and 0.8 blocks per game. He’s never been one to average that many blocks, but that’s because he’s constantly guarding players out on the perimeter. The former first-round pick isn’t afraid to switch onto smaller players, and he oftentimes shuts them down.

Adebayo also had a total of 3.8 defensive win shares during the regular season, which was good enough to rank in the top 10 in the league. Furthermore, he led the NBA with 1.9 defensive box outs per game.

Sometimes, it seems as though some of his efforts on defense go unnoticed. The two-time All-Star seems to agree with that notion.

“I feel like it doesn’t really get noticed until the playoffs,” he said regarding his defense. “That’s when people really start to see who I am, what I can do and how special I am.”

While he’s been a bit up and down on offense throughout the 2023 NBA Playoffs, Adebayo has been stellar on defense. He helped the Heat advance to the Eastern Conference semifinals by stifling Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo late in Game 5 of their first-round series.

He’ll hope to replicate that performance on Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden against the New York Knicks. Miami has a chance to close out the series and move on to the Eastern Conference Finals for the third time in four seasons.

Very few expected the Heat to make it this far, but they’re here now and look like prime title contenders.

Share This Article
David is a Miami native and University of Maryland graduate with experience in writing, editing and video production. He is a proud contributor of Heat Nation.