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#pounditFriday, January 28, 2022

Report: Pat Riley never called Dwyane Wade during contract negotiations

Pat Riley Heat

Dwyane Wade made the decision to sign with the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday, proving that he was not merely trying to leverage the Miami Heat into giving him more money. The relationship between Wade and the team he spent the first 13 years of his career with had gotten so bad, in fact, that he never even spoke to Pat Riley.

According to a report from Manny Navarro of The Miami Herald, Riley did not call Wade once this offseason as the 34-year-old was trying to come to terms with the Heat. Riley is one of the main reasons Miami has been able to attract so many top free agents over the years, and his relationship with Wade has always been good enough that Wade repeatedly took hometown discounts to help the Heat win.

Not this time.

We heard rumblings earlier this week that tension between Wade and the team had reached a boiling point, and it’s clear now that those reports weren’t just negotiating tactics. The Heat are said to have offered Wade a two-year deal worth $40 million, and Wade ended up signing a two-year, $47.5 million deal with the Bulls. It’s hard to believe the Heat weren’t willing to give the most important player in franchise history less than $8 million more spread out over two seasons, but the fact that Riley and Wade weren’t even speaking says a lot.

If you read some of the old tweets Wade sent that were recently dug up, you get the impression he never wanted to leave Miami. However, he felt he had done the team enough favors that it was time to get paid what he is worth. Heat fans should be angry with their team’s front office, not burning Wade’s jersey.


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