Dwyane Wade is back in Miami, and he only has one question: 'Is No. 3 still available?'
Wade was traded away from the Cavaliers for basically nothing, but the deal just feels right
There is only one scenario in which a player way past his prime being traded midseason for peanuts is a feel-good story, and that scenario is Dwyane Wade. from banana boat buddy LeBron James for a protected second-round pick at Thursday's NBA trade deadline, which should be sad. However, exigent circumstances abound. Wade was sent to finish out his NBA career with the Heat. He's back home. And everyone seems happy about it.
First thing's first for Wade. When he sat down at his press conference, he asked a simple question of the Miami media: "Is No. 3 still available?" Naturally, the media nodded in response. Once Wade hangs it up, no one is going to wear that jersey, and even if someone had taken it out of some weird ignorance or obsession, there's no question they'd have given it up in a heartbeat. It's Dwyane Wade.
Wade was away from the Heat for about a year and a half. This is kind of a second homecoming for him, as he played a season for the Bulls in his hometown Chicago. He actually had a decent season for them too, averaging just shy of 20 points per game. However, Wade will always be the Heat's pride and joy. He played 13 seasons with Miami, averaged 23.7, just under six assists and nearly two steals per game. He's a legend in black and red, as he was a contributing factor to James going to Miami -- never mind that Wade won a Finals without his friend. Wade is a three-time NBA Champion with the Heat, and he's revered as such.
And it isn't just like the city is happy to have him or he's happy to be back. Actress Gabrielle Union -- Wade's wife -- had a return of her own upon landing.
And those sick Miami Vice jerseys? Everyone loved them, and there are exciting young players to buy them for, but you can't beat getting a legacy player's jersey. Wade's Miami Vice jersey went on sale at 5 p.m. on Thursday, and."
Wade had no idea he was being dealt, mind you. His agent just told him to call him 911 style, and Wade obliged. "About 11:45, I left my house, was heading into practice in Cleveland," he said, via Dave Hyde of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. "About 12 o'clock, I got a call from my agent, 'Call me 911.' I haven't got a lot of calls on trade deadline from my agent. So ..."
Wade also alluded to missing Miami while he was "abroad." "You appreciate things a little more when you're away from it," he said, per Hyde.
It's a feel-good story for everyone involved, really. The Cavaliers' experiment with assembling a team made of players wasn't working, so they unloaded. Wade was still getting about 23 minutes per game in Cleveland, but they weren't effective, as he was averaging a career-low 11.2 points.
Wade is an incredible player, and no matter how he does in Miami he'll be beloved. The Cavaliers are striving for another Finals appearance, they're third in the East, and the chemistry there is just -- weird. However, if the initial reactions are any indication, the Cavaliers got better and Wade got to go home.
Here's Wade's reaction after the trade:
And here's basically the rest of Miami:
So, to answer your question, Dwyane, I think No. 3 is still available. Everyone knew he'd finish his career in Miami. Homecoming just came a little bit early.
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