Bam Adebayo kicked off his first All-Star Weekend with a win in the Skills Challenge on Saturday night. Adebayo, who will participate in the All-Star Game for the first time in his young NBA career on Sunday, took down a trio of opponents — including two who will also play in the weekend’s main event — en route to winning the competition.
Adebayo started things off with a matchup against Brooklyn Nets standout Spencer Dinwiddie. He cruised to a win, in part because he was able to do something Dwyane Wade didn’t think was in his bag of tricks.
In the second round, Adebayo squared off against another ultra-skilled big man, Pascal Siakam. The two were neck-and-neck for the entire matchup, with Adebayo and Siakam both missing their first attempts from three. But after Siakam’s shot clanked off the rim, Adebayo showed off a smooth stroke to knock out the Toronto Raptors’ superstar.
His opponent was determined when Domantas Sabonis took down Khris Middleton in the other semifinal. While Sabonis looked primed to cruise to the final, he wasn’t able to hit a three and seal his spot right away. Surprisingly, Middleton also struggled to connect on a triple, and as a result, Sabonis made him pay.
The final ended up being a similar story. Adebayo got to the last hurdle before Sabonis, gave his opponent a chance by failing to hit on his first two attempts from three, and eventually, he was able to right the ship and come out on top.
Adebayo is in the midst of quite the season for the surging Miami Heat, looking like a building block for the organization alongside Jimmy Butler and a collection of other talented youngsters. He was rewarded with a spot in the All-Star Game for that reason, and he used Saturday night as an opportunity to remind everyone that he can do a little bit of everything.