Last week, the Oklahoma City Thunder attempted to pry former Wildcats Bam Adebayo and Tyler Herro from the Miami Heat in exchange for NBA superstar Russell Westbrook.
And in true Pat Riley fashion, he told the Thunder to pound sand, opting to keep his prized young Kentucky stars.
Now that Westbrook is in Houston and the Heat are moving forward with that they have now, Adebayo is thrilled not only to still be in Miami, but to be there with a fellow former Wildcat in Herro.
“I can’t tell you [how good we are going to be] right now,” Adebayo said Saturday at his second annual youth basketball clinic. “But on paper, we look like we’re really good. So we’ve just got to fulfill that and go out there and play our hardest and just complete.”
With Herro specifically, Adebayo is intrigued with his newest teammate after watching him put on a show at the NBA Summer League earlier in July.
“[Herro] is a fast learner,” he said. “He wants to soak in information. When I was talking to him in summer league, it seemed like he really wanted to learn and he went out there and changed it just like us. So I feel like he’ll fit in with us.”
While he’s excited to play with Herro, Adebayo made sure he knew right away that he’ll still I’ll be getting the rookie treatment this year Miami.
After getting drafted, Adebayo commented on Herro’s initial Instagram post that he was going to be “trashing him in workouts.”
Aside from the upcoming season and who he’ll be playing with, Adebayo is excited to have his own basketball camp and have a platform to give back to the community.
At his youth camp at Riviera Preparatory School in Miami, the former Kentucky star said he hopes he can give confidence to the kids who aspire to grow up and be just like him.
“Just because they might turn into me, you never know,” he said. “One of these guys might grow up and be 6-10. They might be 5-6 in their freshman year and then grow like Anthony Davis. You never know, and they’re always going to be like: ‘I went to Bam’s camp.’ So it’s always like a little reminder for them.”