Is Bam the Heat’s bridge to the future?

There is a lot of buzz around Bam Adebayo.

Especially now that Hassan Whiteside is no longer around.

The Heat’s 2017 first round pick was a metrics standout after he finally replaced Whiteside in the starting lineup last season, and the Heat — publicly and privately — have not been shy about their feelings for him. As long as he doesn’t get traded for someone like Bradley Beal (a story for another day), it appears Adebayo will receive the 30 minutes per night he should, and get a chance to showcase his talents.

But it’s not just the skills the Heat like — it’s his makeup.

On the night he was drafted, a team official told me they had a huge binder on Adebayo, talking to anyone and everyone who knew him, and that official described him as “the anti-Hassan.” Someone who works with the team. Someone who doesn’t need constant validation. Someone who gets it.

And when you get it, you get praise like this from the keeper of Heat culture on your birthday:

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@bam1of1 I'd be lying if I said I've had or could ask for a better young fella!!! As much as you nag, aggravate, and antagonize the hell out of me, you make it a joy to come to work everyday. The way you see the game. The way you approach the game. Who you play for. Why you play. And how you reach your goal of getting there all falls in line with the young UD. Although different styles we not that different at all kid. Been looking for someone to take this shit and run wit it and from where I'm sitting it's you! You have the mold of a lifer!! It was never more evident then watching you finish the season the way you did last year… Never complained. Just lead by example no matter the circumstances mentally or physically. This bout all the good shit you gonna hear from me til next year so enjoy it kid. Lol. We gon have a lil fun for ya bday then it's back to verbally abusing you. Lol. HBD young fella!!! Idk how old yo ass really is but it's still a blessing to see another year!! Lol. Love ya lil bro/son!!! #og

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“Been looking for someone to take this s— and run wit and from where I’m sitting it’s you!”

And of course, the skills do matter.

He showed off some in the Miami Pro League.

Skip to about 1:05.

Yeah, that’s a 7-foot man.

And that’s why I’m saying this:


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