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#pounditSaturday, April 10, 2021

Dwyane Wade

Dwyane Wade gets tribute video during last game in Denver

Dwyane Wade really face

Dwyane Wade received his share of love from the Denver Nuggets and their fans during his last trip to the Mile High City as an NBA player.

The Dwyane Wade Farewell Tour stopped by Denver on Monday as the Miami Heat continue a six-game road trip. Prior to Wade checking into the game, a video tribute was shown at Pepsi Center with some of the future Hall of Famer’s memorable moments.

Wade entered play on Monday having played in 25 games in his career against the Nuggets. In them he has averaged 20.6 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 5.7 assists while shooting 47 percent from the floor.

NBA finds way to add Dwayne Wade, Dirk Nowitzki to All-Star Game

Dirk Nowitzki

Dwyane Wade and Dirk Nowitzki are currently playing out what will likely be the final season of two Hall of Fame careers, and the NBA has come up with a great way to honor them during the All-Star break.

Neither Nowitzki nor Wade was voted to the All-Star Game or chosen as a reserve, but the NBA announced on Friday that they have added both players to the event as “special team roster additions.” There will now be 13 players on each squad rather than 12.

Wade has already said he will retire following the season, and Nowitzki is likely to do the same.

Wade and Nowitzki had each been selected to 13 All-Star teams before this year, so the NBA’s classy move will give them both 14. While neither player really has the statistics this season to warrant an All-Star selection, the event is a meaningless exhibition. Honoring two of the greatest players of this generation makes sense, and the way the league went about it addresses Wade’s concern about why he didn’t want to be chosen.

Dwyane Wade says he would not pick himself as an All-Star

Dwyane Wade Heat

Many fans want to see Dwyane Wade in the NBA All-Star Game this year simply because it is his last season in what has been a Hall of Fame career, but the 16-year veteran does not think that is enough of a reason for him to get the nod.

Wade finished second overall in Eastern Conference fan voting among all players this year, but he finished tied for third place among East guards with player and media votes also factored in. That means he did not earn a starting spot and would have to make the team as a reserve, and Wade admitted on Friday that he does not believe he should.

“If I’m choosing an All-Star, I’m not picking me,” Wade said. “It’s not an indictment on anything, but guys that deserve to be All-Stars will be All-Stars.”

Wade is averaging 13.8 points and 4.2 assists per game this year. During Thursday night’s TNT broadcast, Charles Barkley said he is against Wade getting a reserve spot as part of his farewell tour because that means snubbing a player who deserved it more. Wade joked on Friday that he actually agrees with Barkley “for the first time.”

“There’s a lot of guys that get their first chance to be All-Stars, and if they deserve it then they deserve it and they should have those spots,” Wade added. “I appreciate the love from my fans to even vote me, to have as many votes as I did. But from an All-Star standpoint, there’s multiple guys that deserve to be in there and I hope they get their opportunity.”

Ben Simmons and Eric Bledsoe are two other guards who would be making their first All-Star appearance, and both have played better than Wade this season. Another player who would have been a candidate suffered a gruesome knee injury this week, but there are still seven other players who deserve to be picked over Wade.

On one hand, the All-Star Game is a largely meaningless event that can provide a nice send-off for players in their final season, kind of like what we saw with Kobe Bryant in 2016. On the other, you’d hate to be the player who got overlooked simply because a guy like Wade is retiring.

Donovan Mitchell gives Dwyane Wade hilarious retirement gift

Dwyane Wade Heat

Dwyane Wade may find himself doing a lot of sitting around when his NBA career officially comes to an end later this year, but fortunately he has friends like Donovan Mitchell to help keep him comfortable in retirement.

Wade’s farewell tour continued on Wednesday when the Heat traveled to Utah, and the Jazz held a private dinner for him the night before the game. The three-time NBA champion was presented with some thoughtful gifts, including a rocking chair from Mitchell.

There’s nothing better than players getting trolled with retirement gifts, and Wade isn’t the first NBA player we have seen get some funny ones. He can probably expect many more as the season rolls on.

Watch: Dwyane Wade gets tribute video from Lakers

LeBron Wade

The Los Angeles Lakers showed Dwyane Wade some love during his trip to Staples Center on Monday night.

The Miami Heat on Monday played the Los Angeles Lakers for the final time this season. The occasion marked the final time Wade and long-time friend LeBron James would be on the court together as competitors, barring an unlikely meeting in the NBA Finals.

The Lakers took the opportunity to play a tribute video for Wade, who embraced James afterward.

Wade is putting the final touches on a Hall of Fame career. He will likely receive other tributes between now and the end of the season after previously announcing this would be his farewell year. This one will probably be among the more memorable.

Erik Spoelstra shares funny story about when Dwyane Wade was with Bulls

Dwyane Wade Heat

Dwyane Wade is back for his first full season with the Miami Heat since leaving in 2016, and now head coach Erik Spoelstra is comfortable spilling some tea about the time that Wade was away.

Before the Heat played the Chicago Bulls on Friday, Spoelstra shared a funny story from when Wade played for the Bulls during the 2016-17 season. The veteran coach said that he put a $5,000 fine on any of his Heat players who fell for a Wade pump fake, per KC Johnson of the Chicago Tribune.

Wade was with the Heat for his first 13 NBA seasons before leaving, including eight of those with Spoelstra as his head coach. Thus, it’s reasonable to expect that the entire organization would be quite familiar with his bag of tricks.

Some NBA coaches have implemented similar kinds of fines in the past, but now that Wade is back with the Heat to finish his career, we can safely say that this story had a happy ending.

LeBron James opens up about last time he may face Dwyane Wade

LeBron James

Sunday’s game between the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat was supposed to be one of the last times LeBron James and Dwyane Wade shared an NBA court together, but life had other plans for Wade. Now, the close friends and former teammates have only one opportunity left.

Wade missed the Lakers’ 113-97 at Miami because he, ironically, had to be in California for the birth of his daughter. LeBron ended up scoring a season-high 51 points, but he was still very disappointed that he couldn’t do battle with Wade.

“It sucks. I can’t even lie to you guys,” James said, per Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. “I have never lied to you guys, obviously. I mean we all know the reason why he is not here.”

The Lakers won’t make another trip to Miami this season, but the Heat will travel to the Staples Center for a rematch on Dec. 10. LeBron is crossing his fingers that the timing works out for him to face Wade one last time.

“To know that we only had two more games against each other, and one of them isn’t going to happen, it sucked a little bit,” he added. “Hopefully we are both in uniform when Miami comes to L.A. and we can finish this off the right way.”

It’s unclear how much of an impact Wade would have made for the Heat defensively, but perhaps he could have helped hold James under 50 points. That will almost certainly be the only time in LeBron’s career that he is disappointed after a convincing win in which he drops 51.

Dwyane Wade blasts Rockets in defense of Carmelo Anthony

Dwyane Wade Heat

Dwyane Wade blasted the Houston Rockets on social media over their treatment of Carmelo Anthony.

The Rockets are off to a disappointing 4-7 start to the season. There are several reasons for them stumbling out of the gate. The popular theory is to blame Anthony.

Anthony is clearly not the player he used to be. That likely played a part in the reports saying that Houston is preparing to move on from the 10-time All-Star.

This news did not sit well with Wade, who took to social media to blast the Rockets, saying they aren’t addressing the “real problem.”

This isn’t the first time Wade has been vocal on Twitter in defense of a close friend. When current New York Knicks head coach David Fizdale was fired from the same job with the Memphis Grizzlies, Wade declared he needed answers.

The Rockets have had bigger issues during their first 11 games of the season other than the play of Carmelo Anthony. They lost two pieces who were important to last season’s success in Trevor Ariza and Luc Mbah a Moute. Houston has also been without Chris Paul for two games and James Harden has missed three. Wade appears to have a point in thinking the optics surrounding the Carmelo Anthony report make it seem like he is the scapegoat.

Dwyane Wade presents former Heat coach Fizdale with signed jersey

Dwyane Wade really face

Dwyane Wade presented a parting gift to an old friend who made his return to Miami as the head coach of the New York Knicks.

Wade is in his last season in the NBA, giving him one last opportunity to compete against friends he’s made over his Hall of Fame career. On Wednesday, the Knicks visited Miami for a game against the Heat. New York is coached by David Fizdale, who spent eight seasons as an assistant coach with the Heat prior to getting his first head coaching opportunity with the Memphis Grizzlies.

After Wednesday’s game, which Miami won 110-87, Wade presented Fizdale with a signed No. 3 Heat jersey.

Fizdale was popular with the players during his time in Miami, especially Wade. When he was fired by the Grizzlies, Wade and LeBron James voiced their displeasure on social media.

Dwyane Wade announces he will return for one more season

Dwyane Wade really face

Dwyane Wade announced on Sunday that he will return to the Miami Heat for the upcoming season, which he says will be his last.

Wade published a nearly 10-minute-long video on YouTube in which he talked about his decision to continue his career. The title of the video is “One Last Dance…”, which seems to be the theme of his farewell season.

“It goes by fast,” Wade said of his career.

He talked about how difficult the decision has been, acknowledging “it’s been a tough summer.” He also said this was the “hardest decision” he’s ever had to make.

He said he asked himself whether he could deal with the travel, the physical pain, being away from his family. He says there comes a time when you ask yourself whether it’s time to give attention to others.

Despite all these questions and doubts, Wade decided he wanted to play for another year. He will turn 37 in January.

Wade averaged 11.4 points, 3.8 rebounds and 3.4 assists in 22.9 minutes per game last season. He was traded midseason from Cleveland back to the Miami Heat.