Miami Heat: The rise of Bam Adebayo makes 2019-20 a success

Whether the 2019-20 NBA season resumes or not, the Miami Heat could look back at it as a success thanks to the rise of Bam Adebayo.

Entering the 2019-20 NBA season, the narrative that followed the Miami Heat centered around the idea of finding a second star to stick next to Jimmy Butler (who the team had acquired during the offseason via sign-and-trade).

However, even if the 2019-20 season isn’t resumed, the Heat has to consider this campaign as a success considering they answered the question of where – and how – they’re going to secure that second star for Butler.

It came in the way of Bam Adebayo, who quickly emerged as one of the better two-way bigs in the NBA. In just his first season as a full-time starter, his third season overall, Bam averaged 16 points, 11 rebounds, and five assists per game on 57 percent shooting from the field.

He was also named to his first all-star game and will likely win the NBA’s Most Improved Player of the Year award this season. Bam quickly emerged as one of the Heat’s most important players and was an anchor to the team’s defense and, perhaps more often than Heat coach Erik Spoelstra would’ve liked, a sigh of relief for the team on the offensive end.

Even though he still has some holes to fill in his offensive repertoire, including a consistent jump shot to stretch the defense, he’s proven to be one of the Heat’s key components to a top 10 offense.

Miami had high hopes for the playoffs. This is a team that believed it could advance to the second round and if they could somehow avoid the Milwaukee Bucks in the second round, likely thought they’d have a fighting chance at making it to the Eastern Conference Finals.

A big part of that was the emergence of Bam and the excellent play of Kendrick Nunn, Tyler Herro, Goran Dragic, and Jimmy Butler. The Heat was quickly emerging as a dangerous sleeper team in the East behind the Bucks.

It’d be a shame if the 2019-10 NBA season and playoffs weren’t able to conclude and play out. But, with every passing day, that’s becoming more and more like a real possibility. With that said, no matter how the next few months play out in regards to the NBA season, the Miami Heat can look back at the 2019-20 campaign and consider it a success.

Heading into the offseason and into 2020-21, the Heat’s biggest goal now will revolve around finding the third star to stick next to Bam Adebayo and Jimmy Butler. Miami is slowly taken steps back to contender status. They have to feel good about what they’ve managed to do as a franchise over the last year.