The Miami Heat are riding high after a big win over the rival Boston Celtics. Miami was able to rip off a 15-0 run in the fourth quarter to help complete an exciting comeback. The driving force behind the gutsy effort was starting center Bam Adebayo, who had a monster game against Boston.
Adebayo finished the night with 30 points and 15 rebounds. He even knocked down the eventual game-winning shot with under 30 seconds to play.
This type of play is nothing new for the former Kentucky standout, he’s been doing it all season. Adebayo has appeared in 44 of Miami’s 49 games. He’s averaging career-highs in both points, at 21.6 per game, and rebounds, at 10.2 per game, while also dishing 3 assists per game. On top of that, he’s had an efficient shooting year, knocking down 54% of his attempts.
Despite all of that, he hasn’t been getting respect from fans voting for this seasons All-Star Game. The Heat center has not been amongst the top vote-getters in any of three returns so far.
“I’ll leave fan voting to fan voting,” he said, per Anthony Chiang of the Miami Herald. “There are guys that shouldn’t even be on that list. But it’s fan voting. That’s what it is and you got to live with that.”
Adebayo can still find his way into the All-Star Game, he’ll just have to do it with the help of coaches around the league.
“Right now I’m in a position where it’s based off the coaches in the East,” Adebayo said. “Now that, I’m going to be (upset) about if they tell me somebody else has played better than me this year considering I’m leading the NBA in paint points and I’m one of the reasons why we’re winning.”
Bam Adebayo Cites ‘Rivalry’ As Fuel For Monster Performance vs Celtics
The All-Star Game hasn’t been the only thing the big man has spoken about as of late. He also discussed his motivation heading into the January 24 matchup against the Celtics, citing the rivalry between the two teams as his fuel.
“It was the rivalry,” Adebayo explained via Brendan Tobin. “They booted us from the Eastern Conference Finals last year. So, I feel like a lot of guys on our team carried that.”
It’s clear that Adebayo and his teammates haven’t forgotten the hard-fought series against Boston. After losing Game 7 at the then FTX Arena, the Heat watched the visitors lift the trophy and celebrate on their home floor.
Heat Could Show Interest in Raptors’ Fred VanVleet: Report
Miami’s win over Boston marked their 15th in their last 22 games. The recent surge is the type of thing that could motivate Pat Riley and the front office to swing a trade to improve the roster ahead of the February 9 NBA Trade Deadline.
If the Heat are interested in making a trade, one player to keep an eye on is Fred VanVleet of the Toronto Raptors.