Bam Adebayo considers himself the best defender in the NBA

NBA Analytics Network

The Miami Heat has been consistently inconsistent through the 2022-2023 NBA season thus far. Their longest winning streak of the season is just four games, which also matches their longest losing streak. Four games under .500 are the worst we’ve gotten, while the best are only two games over.

It has been a struggle at times for head coach Erik Spoelstra as the Heat have arrived midway through the season. The lineup changes almost nightly as there is not a single player on the roster who has appeared in all 41 games, and everyone is missing at least two.

One of the players that Spoelstra has been able to write most consistently into the lineup is Bam Adebayo. It’s easy to imagine how much worse it would be for Miami this season without him in the lineup as he has taken his game to another level.

The Kentucky product has taken that next step in its development, averaging a career-high 21.4 points per game along with 9.9 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 1.1 steals and 0.9 blocks in 35 .2 minutes per game. He is an integral part of the team’s game plan at both ends of the field, but he feels he has the biggest impact on defense.

LATEST NBA NEWS: Bam Adebayo & Miami Heat Updates

In a recent Q&A with’s Mark Medina, Adebayo was asked several things, including his all-around game. While many people want to focus on his work offensively, he is most confident in his defense where he believes he is the most influential player in the league.

“But I feel like I’m the best defender in the league. I can guard from one to five and I can guard anyone on the field. In the past seasons that’s how I got on the field. Defense is how I got where I am now. That will never go away. I will always have the mindset to want to be in the top five on both units.

Adebayo is a driving force behind the Heat with the No. 6 defensive rating in the NBA at 111.4. That’s a boost to what has been a disappointing season offensively. Despite how well he plays on that side of the field, the Heat ranks 25th in offensive rating with 111.1.

LATEST NBA NEWS: Bam Adebayo & Miami Heat Updates

Improving offensively will be key to helping the Heat climb back up the Eastern Conference standings and be the contender many people think they can be. Adebayo will continue to help them achieve that as they play defense at an elite level. He eventually hopes to get the recognition he feels he deserves after finishing fourth in the Defensive Player of the Year award last season.

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