Bam Adebayo had a tall task in front of him tonight at the HoopHall Classic in Springfield, Massachusetts. The 5-star forward faced-off against the #1 team in the nation, Chino Hills.
Bam’s High Point Christian lost 100-75 but he still had an impressive stat line, finishing with 13 points and 18 rebounds. Chino Hills’ up-and-down style of play made it difficult for him to find any rhythm playing the post in the half court offense, yet he still found a way to be effective.
1. He is a well-rounded player.
I had heard it before, but I still didn’t expect him to be such a complete player. When you see a guy that big dunk that hard, it’s hard to imagine him doing anything outside of the post. I was wrong.
2. Awareness and vision make him a great passer.
Even though he’s usually in a crowded lane, he knows where his teammates are and can get it to them even when he’s being surrounded by double and triple teams. Passing out the post is under-valued. It’s been absent from this team, taking away easy inside-out shooting opportunities. The will not be the case with Adebayo in the post for Kentucky.
3. The man runs the floor like no other.
Chino Hills plays faster than Roy Williams at North Carolina, more comparable to the old Loyola-Marymount teams that were running and gunning in the early 90’s. Even though Bam looks the part of “athletic freak,” I didn’t expect him to keep up. Yet, he never slowed down. Not only was he keeping up, he was a threat on the fast break. He showed a next-level type of motor. Even after multiple trips down the court, he was still fighting off multiple defenders for rebounds. Which brings me to my next point…
4. He does everything right rebounding the ball.
It’s not just because he’s jumping over guys for the ball, he is fundamental, boxing out how coaches teach you to box out. Bam puts himself in great position to rebound on the defensive end, and hustles toward the rim on the offensive end.
5. Bam is a brute, with touch.
Nothing is more difficult than taking contact, yet still having enough touch to finish. Bam didn’t have a ton of opportunities, but every single shot he put up was with purpose and had enough finesse to fall in. Hopefully this won’t be the last chance we have to watch him on National TV, because I have a feeling tonight only scratched the surface.
Here’s just a few highlights I compiled during this evening’s game.