Heat center Bam Adebayo strengthening his All-Star case
Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra would rather let the numbers do the talking.
He feels they are enough to justify center Bam Adebayo being a reserve for next month's NBA All-Star Game in Chicago. The selections will be announced Thursday night.
Adebayo strengthened his case in Monday's victory against the Orlando Magic at AmericanAirlines Arena. He finished with 20 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. It was his third career triple-double.
"I hope so," Spoelstra said of Adebayo's All-Star hopes. "Right or wrong, I try to let his game and our winning and potentially what I say after the game and before, speak for itself."
Spoelstra said he won't reach out to other coaches to speak on Adebayo's behalf. He thinks statistics are more than enough to justify the selection.
"I don't contact coaches one-on-one," Spoelstra said. "That's wrong. I don't feel comfortable doing that. I don't like receiving those random texts out of nowhere ... Your play should speak louder than anything else. I just feel in my heart that Bam's play has spoken loud enough to be an All-Star."
Adebayo is averaging 16 points, 10.4 rebounds and 4.8 assists, all career-highs. He is a key contributor on a team that is 32-14 and ranked second in the Eastern Conference.
If he is chosen, it could add to an expected busy All-Star Weekend for the Heat. Guard Jimmy Butler will likely be selected as a reserve, too. Forward Derrick Jones Jr. has already accepted an invite to the dunk contest while rookies Kendrick Nunn and Tyler Herro are strong candidates for the Rising Stars Challenge. Forward Duncan Robinson could land in the 3-point contest and Spoelstra will coach the team if the Heat remain in the No. 2 spot.
The Heat play host to the Boston Celtics Tuesday night.