Steven Adams is not of this world.

At least, that's what you'll hear from some of the players who have to match up against him in an NBA match.

The 25-year-old Kiwi is widely considered one of the strongest players in the NBA, but just how strong isn't something gauged by some sort of contest at All-Star weekend.

Instead, it's about trusting the words of those who play with and against him and, as Philadelphia 76ers star Jimmy Butler said after a game last season: "that motherf***** is strong."


"He hit me with one screen and I thought my life was over...he's from Krypton or something."

But in the ever-changing NBA landscape, perhaps Adams' game is not of this world, but of generations past. There's nothing flashy about his work, he doesn't float out beyond the three-point line to hoist up shots, but he will grind his defender into a pulp when backing down in the post.

San Antonio Spurs forward LaMarcus Aldridge tries to back down Steven Adams in the post. Photo / Getty Images
San Antonio Spurs forward LaMarcus Aldridge tries to back down Steven Adams in the post. Photo / Getty Images

"He is strong. He is strong," former teammate Taj Gibson said to ESPN. "He's also highly intelligent, he's extremely physical, he loves the physicality of the game, he loves setting screens. He's just a beast down there, man."

But to play such a physical role night after night, Adams' body needs to be well maintained, which is where Adams' love for science comes to play.

The Kiwi is a big advocate of the sauna and the science behind it. Studies have shown saunas help to relieve muscle tension and allow for faster recovery.

"The research behind it, mate, you can bloody ask one of those guys who's got a degree," Adams said to ESPN. "Bloody science, whatever mate. I'm a big fan of science, but whoever searched that up, cool man, because I'm a fan of the sauna."

Gibson said: "He says it's good for testosterone levels, for testosterone growth or something."

It seems to work the trick for Adams, who has played 429 of a possible 453 regular season games since entering the league. Over that time, he's learnt that putting his body on the line in the low post is the best way to make his mark.


Adams' approach to the game can be defined by the word 'balance'. In the weight room, he focuses on strengthening his core and base so he can plant himself in the paint.

"One of the reasons I've found a little bit of success down low is no one plays low-post defense anymore," Adams told ESPN. "It's so much easier in the post. It's so tough to score against [Marcin] Gortat, Nene [Hilario], the older guys. They've played it so many times, over and over again. They have their own little tricks, they know the balance, they know what to force you to."

Adams has won plenty of fans through his play, and charmingly Kiwi personality, and was among the top voted players for the NBA All-Star game by fans with less than a week remaining in voting.