Heat summer League preview: Expect to see plenty of Bam Adebayo

Miami Heat’s Bam Adebayo shoot as Philadelphia 76ers’ Ben Simmons watches during Game 1 of the first-round of the playoffs. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)

SACRAMENTO – The Heat did not add Bam Adebayo to their summer league roster to play sparingly. Adebayo will see regular minutes when the team kicks off two-weeks of summer league play Monday against Golden State at Golden 1 Center.

Heat summer league coach Eric Glass, the team’s video coordinator/player development coach, said it’s a front office decision but he expects Adebayo, Miami’s top pick (14th overall) in the 2017 draft, to play in the majority of the games. The Heat will play three games at the home of the Sacramento Kings before moving into the NBA Summer League, Friday through July 17 in Las Vegas.

“We want him to see him improve in every area,” said Glass, who added that Adebayo, and others, would play heavy minutes in some games and sit out others. The Heat have a 14-man roster.

[Miami Heat finalizes summer league roster; games start Monday in Sacramento]

“We want to see his leadership and how he’s affecting his other teammates, we want to see that grow. On the court you’ll see him handle, you’ll see him screening and rolling, you’ll see him in the post a little bit. Hopefully we’ll stretch him out to the three.”

Adebayo mentioned recently he’s hoping to expand his outside shooting. Last season Adebayo played in 19 games and averaged 6.9 points and 5.5 rebounds as a rookie. The majority of his baskets were dunks and at the rim. He attempted just seven 3-pointers, missing them all.

“The system will be free flowing so we’ll give him some options to space to the corner or he’ll be down on the box,” Glass said. “So, he’ll have some freedom to get around. We’ll get him in spots that we want him and places where he can be most effective. But we’re going to try to develop his all-around game.”

The roster includes two others who saw time with the Heat last season, forward Derrick Jones Jr., who was signed to a two-year contract Saturday, and point guard Derrick Walton Jr. Jones and Walton spent time with the Heat and with Sioux Falls, the organization’s developmental league team, last season as two-way players.

“We love Derrick,” Glass said about Jones. “He’s a typical Miami Heat guy. We are trying to develop (him), teach him how to be a pro, teach him how to work. From the day he came here, he’s been all in he’s been wide-eyed. We’re going to put him in positions to grow and be successful. You’ll see him on the wing, attacking. You’ll see him handling. You’ll see him with an improved 3-point jumper so hopefully he can see the ball go through the net.”

Glass was asked what the Heat want to see from Walton:

“Leadership at the point guard position and then his defense has really improved,” he said. “He’s really committed to that end. He’s become more competitive at that end. He’s a guy who can really shoot it from outside.”

The Heat’s roster is a mix of undrafted free agents from the 2018 class and others who have bounced around several professional leagues. The team was announced last week and they have been practicing since Friday. Glass said the level in which each player is able to make the transition depends on their background.

“Duncan Robinson is a guy, he’s shown a high IQ but I think playing for (John) Beilein at Michigan has helped him. He’s picking up things quicker than some of the other guys that might not be running as much NBA stuff.

“Heat terminology is going to be different. But we try to fast-track the guys. I would say the college guys are the ones who have the hardest transition because it’s a little bit more terminology than they were used to.”

[Miami Heat swingman Rodney McGruder’s contract guaranteed for 2018-19]

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