Dwyane Wade's farewell tour took a surprising turn on Monday night, but it was a very cool turn nonetheless.
After each game this season, Wade has made it a point to swap jerseys with a player from the opposing team, usually a star player. But after the Heat eked out a one-point victory over the Hawks in Miami, Wade sought out a little-known Atlanta rookie and asked to trade jerseys.
That rookie, 20-year-old Kevin Huerter, happened to idolize Wade growing up. When Wade found out about the youngster's admiration, he made a plan to find him after the final time they played against each other.
"Earlier in the year, a good friend of mine told me about him when he was younger, that he used to wear my shoes. He wore number 3 because of me, he looked up to me," said Wade. "So I knew I was going to surprise him the last time we played them. But I really like his game. He's someone, since preseason when we played them all the way until now, he's gotten so much better, so from one number 3 to another, I thought I'd switch jerseys with him."
It led to a pretty terrific postgame moment.
Huerter explained after the game why he appreciated Wade so much growing up.
"He's always done it the right way,'' Huerter said. "You never hear him with off-court type of stuff. He brought championships to this city. He's been with the Heat for the majority of his career. He's been loyal to them. And as a guy coming up, a young guy, starting out with the Hawks, I hope I can continue a long career with them. The league's going to miss him, for sure."
Huerter was picked 19th overall by the Hawks in last year's draft after playing college ball at Maryland. He's having a pretty solid first season in Atlanta, averaging 9.4 points per game and shooting 39 percent from beyond the arc.