The Miami Heat were hit with some devastating news when it comes to star Bam Adebayo as besides being out tonight against the Indiana Pacers, he'll miss the road-trip to Toronto when the team faces the Raptors next Wednesday. Adebayo will be considered “day-to-day” as his official designation according to the Heat's X (formerly known as Twitter) account.
Miami head coach Erik Spoelstra spoke before the Pacers game about the big-man's absence and what it means to the team. He told ClutchPoints that he feels “comfortable” at the depth of centers he has behind Adebayo and that they provided good minutes in the past when the featured player was not present.
“It's not our first time, so we feel comfortable about our front-court depth. It'll look a little bit different which is what we like about our depth. Each guy brings something a little bit different, and they've all proven that they've been able to impact games already to help us win,” Spoelstra said. “The game that you know, bam, missed in Cleveland, we got some great front-court play you know, from our bigs and it may be a little bit different tonight. These guys played super small and in some of their lineups. So we just have to figure it out and just make an impact for whatever minutes they have in that spot.”
Adebayo has been dealing with a left hip contusion since the start of the season where has has missed time before. He was banged in the same spot in the first half of Thursday's win over Indiana which prompted him to miss the rest of the game. The University of Kentucky product had been averaging around 23 points and 10 rebounds per game in what would be a career-best season for Adebayo.
The players to fill in for the Heat's Adebayo?
Fortunately for Spoelstra and rest of the Heat, they have players that can fill in temporarily in the likes of Kevin Love, Thomas Bryant, and Orlando Robinson. When Adebayo couldn't play in the past, the three of them provided good support at the position. Either way, it's a blow for the team as the star is excellent on the defensive end and taken a huge leap on the offensive side.
Spoelstra talks about Adebayo and his status after the news of him being unable to play the next two games as he'll be listed as “day-to-day.” He stressed to the media before the game against the Pacers that they're going to “take care of him” as he'll be needed down the line for the Heat.
“But he will continue to be day to day, we just want to take care of him before it does take a turn for something else,” Spoelstra said. “He seems to continue to get hit in that exact same spot which is almost impossible to do but what will take care of him he'll feel better soon.”
Even with Adebayo out for the majority of the game Thursday, the Heat prevailed in a shootout against Tyrese Haliburton and Indiana by a score of 142-132. Jimmy Butler would score a season-high 36 points and Jaime Jaquez Jr. would also have a season-high of his own with 24 points.
Before tonight's game, Miami is 11-8 on the season which puts them at sixth in the Eastern Conference. Funny enough, they are in front of the Pacers who are seventh.