MIAMI(CBSMiami)- Bam Adebayo has described the past five days of his life as a “whirlwind.” The Miami Heat forward joined The Joe Rose Show on Tuesday to talk about it.
Adebayo was selected fourteenth overall by the Heat in last Thursday’s NBA draft. The 6-9, 19 year old out of Kentucky knew he had a productive pre-draft workout for the Heat, but wasn’t sure what to expect when Miami was on the clock. The moment, as it turns out, was quite suspenseful.
Adebayo felt Miami could be leaning in his direction “when they put the five minute limit on the clock,” he said. “Then there was thirty seconds left, and my agent looked at me,” Adebayo recalled, as the pressure mounted. In that situation, players expect to be notified by the team before the clock expires. Adebayo’s time was running out.
“Then I started getting notifications (saying) ‘welcome to Miami,'” Adebayo said. “And I was like ‘okay!'”
His journey through the draft had ended, but his NBA journey has only begun.
Scouting reports have compared Adebayo to a young Kevin Garnett or a young Shawn Kemp. WQAM’s Zach Krantz sees similarities between Adebayo and Serge Ibaka.
“I see a good mix of all,” said Adebayo. He added: “I’m not really into talking. I just play basketball.” It’s an attitude that will surely be appreciated by team president Pat Riley and head coach Erik Spoelstra.
Rose asked Adebayo to share any advice he’s received from Riley and Spoelstra so far.
“It was mainly what they said about James Johnson,” recalled Adebayo. “When he got there they changed his body. They let him play free like he couldn’t do in other offenses.”
James Johnson was transformed by the Heat culture a season ago. He arrived in Miami at 275 pounds and quickly trimmed down to 238. Johnson thrived under Spoelstra’s ‘positionless basketball’ mentality, and Adebayo hopes to do the same.
Adebayo told Rose he’s been watching his diet since midway through his lone season at Kentucky. He’s cut out desserts and sugary drinks from his routine.
“I was 260 (lbs) during the season and right after cutting out the sweets I was 250.”
Listen to the full interview from The Joe Rose Show above.