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Five Stars: A Return to Form

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The Heat secured a convincing victory over the invading Thunder on Monday night.

NBA: Oklahoma City Thunder at Miami Heat Rhona Wise-USA TODAY Sports

Five Stars is a series where we focus on the five most outstanding game performances in a given NBA contest.

I’m mostly reliant on John Hollinger’s model for GameScore, but I apply a small adjustment for each player’s plus-minus rating in the game. You’ll also notice both an honorable mention and a dishonorable mention. The former to focus on the player with the highest approximate PER who didn’t get featured within the Five Stars, proper; the latter to put an uncomfortable spotlight to the player who stood out for all the wrong reasons

First Star

Bam Adebayo - Miami Heat (22.5)

Bam Adebayo turned in his second “First Star” effort of the season by...not missing. He made nine-of-10 from the field, although he did miss one of his three free throw attempts.

Adebayo led all scorers with 20 points and with a plus-25 rating, and also collected eight rebounds while dishing out four assists in just over 28 minutes on the floor.

Second Star

Jimmy Butler - Miami Heat (19.4)

It was a nice return to form by Jimmy Butler, who missed all of his shots in the loss to the Mavericks. In today’s game, he made six-of-12 and drained all six of his foul shots. Butler pulled three off the glass and assisted on six buckets, also adding a steal and finishing with a plus-17 rating in just under 26 minutes.

Third Star

Kelly Olynyk - Miami Heat (17.6)

Starting Kelly Olynyk seems like a good idea after tonight’s performance. The eight-year vet drained seven-of-nine from the field, including five-of-seven from beyond the arc for a total of 19 points. In 27-and-a-half minutes, he posted a plus-18 rating and collected eight boards with a single assist.

Fourth Star

Darius Bazley - Oklahoma City Thunder (13.4)

Darius Bazley stands as the lone OKC rep in the Five Stars with his performance on Monday night. In 26 minutes, he made half of his 10 field goal attempts, including three-for-five from deep and all three of his foul shots. Bazley also pulled down a team-high eight rebounds, with two assists, two steals, and a blocked shot. His 16 points were the second best total on the Thunder, behind Shai Gilgeous-Alexander’s 18.

Fifth Star

Tyler Herro - Miami Heat (10.1)

Tyler Herro only made three-of-nine overall, including just one-of-five from outside to finish with only seven points. He also showed us that even when the shots aren’t falling for him, he can find other ways to contribute. He led everyone with nine rebounds and with eight assists, collecting a steal and finishing at plus-17 in 29 minutes.

NBA: Miami Heat at Dallas Mavericks Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Honorable Mention

Kendrick Nunn - Miami Heat (Approximate PER of 38.5(!) in six minutes)

Kendrick Nunn was super for six minutes, scoring eight points on four-of-six shooting. Both of his misses came from three-point land, and he also added a pair of assists despite his limited time on the floor.

Dishonorable Mention

Isaiah Roby - Oklahoma City Thunder (Approximate PER of 2.4 in 24 minutes)

Isaiah Roby was just about invisible for the Thunder in just over a half of play. He made one basket in five attempts, a three-pointer. He also pulled down two rebounds, one on each side of the court. Roby had a pair of dimes along with one blocked shot, but finished at minus-20.

Seasonal Five Star Standings

Bam Adebayo - 30
Goran Dragić - 19
Jimmy Butler - 11
Tyler Herro - 8
Kelly Olynyk - 8
Duncan Robinson - 4
Avery Bradley - 3
Precious Achiuwa - 1