Written by Nicolas Papa/7-12-20
When the Heat drafted Edrice Adebayo out of Kentucky with the 14th pick in the 2017 draft most of us didn’t think anything crazy of it. Before he was selected by the Miami Heat DraftExpress said, “There are several concerns about Adebayo’s defensive profile, most notably in his rim protection and defensive rebounding. He’s never been an elite defensive rebounder, finding far more success typically on the offensive glass.” This evaluation couldn’t have been anymore incorrect. Bam has become an elite rebounder and his unique skill on the defensive end to guard 1-5 has come in handy this season to say the least. After his 2nd season the consensus for Heat fans was that Bam would finally break out In his starting role not being in the shadow of former Miami Heat center Hassan Whiteside. The Heat organization had confidence in a great 3rd season for Bam as well and he has produced. Averaging 16.2 PPG, 10.5 RPG, 5.1 APG. The stats don’t even show the impact Bam makes with simple movements and staying active at all times on the court. He was a first time Allstar this season and was arguably a top 5 center throughout the season. He also proved himself to be an All-NBA defender with great performances against the likes of reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo.
Back in 2014 when LeBron James left the Heat it felt like Miami was going to have a bleak future. Chris Bosh was close to finalizing a deal with the Houston Rockets before Miami went into desperation mode to resign him. At the time it seemed like the Heat weren’t to happy about the way LeBron departed from Miami. So they basically branded DWade and Chris Bosh heat lifers in the offseason. A heat lifer is a player that really made Miami a home and made them into a better team. Guys like UD and Alonzo Mourning are also heat lifers. They are the ones that still come around and make an impact within the community and with the team. Whether it’s giving a few tips to our young guys or coming to games to show their support their presence is always felt. Bam has that way about him that makes fans and players alike love him. He has and hopefully will always give 100% for the Heat Organization. When Dwayne Wade returned from his brief 1 1/2 year hiatus from the Heat he said that he saw something special in Bam. Alonzo was the one who set the bar for Wade. Wade believes he has set the bar for Bam. He wants Bam to be the next talent for the Miami Heat to set the bar for someone 15-20 years down the line. If the Heat treat him right and don’t make the same mistakes they did with Wade we will have Bam in Miami for his whole career and I really believe that. For Wade to go out of his way to praise Bam says something. At just 22 years old Bam has been said to be an all around great person and teammate. Most importantly for the franchise Bam has been touted as the reason the Heat have done so well this season. As a Heat fan myself I hope to see Bam in a Miami Heat jersey for the rest of his career and have his jersey retired by the end of it.