Adebayo selected to first NBA All-Star Game as a reserve

Miami Heat center Bam Adebayo in action during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Washington Wizards, Friday, Dec. 6, 2019, in Miami. The Heat won 112-103. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)

CHICAGO – Former Kentucky men’s basketball forward and budding NBA superstar Bam Adebayo will make his first NBA-All Star appearance in the league’s annual showcase on Feb. 16 in Chicago.

Joining former UK star Anthony Davis, who was voted into the starting lineup last week from a pool of fans (50%), players (25%) and media (25%), Adebayo was chosen as a reserve by the league’s head coaches. The announcement was made Thursday on TNT.

Kentucky’s two NBA All-Star selections are tied for the most among all colleges.

While Davis will be making his seventh overall appearance – most all-time among former UK players – and his fourth as a starter, the appearance will be an official stamp on Adebayo’s breakthrough season.

Teams will be set by the All-Star starters who led their respective conferences in fan votes during NBA All-Star voting, LeBron James (Los Angeles Lakers) and Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks) will serve as this year's captains.

The team rosters for the 69th NBA All-Star Game will be revealed on TNT in a special 2020 NBA All-Star Draft Feb. 6 at 7 p.m.

The 2020 NBA All-Star Game, featuring Team LeBron vs. Team Giannis, will take place Feb. 16 at the United Center in Chicago. TNT and ESPN Radio will air the game live at 8 p.m.

Adebayo, who was a part of the 2017 Elite Eight and Southeastern Conference championship team, has transitioned in year three from a talented young big man with potential to one of the game’s best forwards. With a menacing combination of size and athleticism, Adebayo has formed a strong core in Miami that has shocked the league with a 32-15 start and a third-place standing in the East.

The 6-foot-9 forward is averaging a double-double for the Heat with 16.0 points and 10.4 rebounds per game, the latter a team high. Accentuating his versatility, Adebayo is averaging 4.7 assists, 1.2 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game. He recorded his first career triple-double in December and already has three at this point. He’s shooting 58.9% from the floor.

In his lone season at Kentucky, Adebayo averaged 13.0 points, 8.0 rebounds and 1.5 rebounds with eight double-doubles. He tabbed to the All-SEC Second Team by both the media and the league’s coaches. He was also an All-SEC Freshman Team selection and a member of the SEC All-Tournament team after helping lead UK to the crown. He registered eight double-doubles with the Wildcats before being selected 14th overall by the Heat in 2017.

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