Bam Adebayo believes his snub from the NBA Defensive Player of the Year award the last two seasons was unfair. The Heat big doesn’t feel Marcus Smart or Rudy Gobert should have won the award in either of their past two seasons.
Bam Adebayo believes he should have been awarded for his defensive effort, winning the trophy himself. Adebayo told campers at the Heat’s youth clinic at Hard Rock Stadium he’s being undervalued, via Ira Winderman of the Sun-Sentinel.
“I should have won it the last two years, and I will win it this year.”
The challenge for him as the Heat’s center is the NBA is loaded with high-quality defensive centers — he made the All-Defensive Second Team as a forward because Rudy Gobert (Jazz, then) and Robert Williams (Celtics) were the two centers on the teams.
The Heat have led a top-five defense each of the past two seasons, and as their primary defender in the paint, Adebayo deserves a lot of credit. At 25, Adebayo has a lot of time to grow and become even better.
This past year he had 13 first-place votes and 42 of the 100 media voters had him on their three-person ballot. However, he was snubbed from the finalists list with Marcus Smart, Mikal Bridges and Rudy Gobert being elected as the top-3 candidates for DPOY.