Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo again found themselves as teammates Monday, with the Miami Heat leaders named second-team NBA All-Defensive.
It is the second consecutive year Adebayo has been so honored, the fifth time in Butler’s career.
Adebayo was named to the second team despite finishing fourth in the voting for NBA Defensive Player of the Year by the same media electorate. Factoring into that outcome was the position-specific requirement for the two All-Defensive teams.
Named first-team All-Defensive were Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert, Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons and Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green. Rounding out the first team were Milwaukee Bucks guard Jrue Holiday and Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo.
Joining Adebayo and Butler on the second team were 76ers center Joel Embiid, 76ers guard Matisse Thybulle and Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard.
The voting was conducted on a weighted system, with Adebayo placing sixth in the overall voting and Butler seventh, each with 37 first-team votes and 37 second-team votes.
The cutoff for the first team was the 135 points (43 first-place votes) of Antetokounmpo.
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The Heat had promoted Adebayo as a candidate for NBA Defensive Player of the Year. Butler finished 10th in that media voting.
Adebayo has a bonus in his impending extension for making first-team All-NBA, but not for making an All-Defensive team. Butler does not have bonuses in his contract since he already is earning the NBA maximum.
Adebayo was named second-team All-Defensive last season, the first time he had made one of the teams. Butler previously was named second-team All-Defensive in 2014, ’15, ’16 and ’18. He led the NBA in steals this past season.
The lone players to be named first-team All-Defensive in the Heat’s 33 seasons remain Alonzo Mourning (1999, 2000) and LeBron James (2011, ’12 and ’13).
In addition, previously named second-team All-Defensive from the Heat were P.J. Brown (1997, ’99), Bruce Bowen (2001), Dwyane Wade (2005, ’09, ’10), James (2014), Hassan Whiteside (2016) and Adebayo last season.
The All-Defensive teams were selected by a global panel of 100 sportswriters and broadcasters. Players were awarded two points for each vote to the NBA All-Defensive first team and one point for each vote to the second team. Voters selected two guards, two forwards and one center for each team, choosing players at the position they play regularly. Players who received votes at multiple positions were slotted at the position at which they received the most votes, with Adebayo getting his nod at forward and Butler at guard.