Wade, Heat do the right thing


VIDEO: Wade agrees to one-year contract with Miami

It was, of course, the only deal that made sense for both Dwyane Wade and the Heat.

It didn’t get Wade the maximum amount for which he was eligible and it still doesn’t make him the highest-paid player on the Miami roster next season (Chris Bosh, $22 million). But Wade got his raise from the $16 million due before opting out and leaves him the option of hitting the jackpot next summer when the salary cap is expected to go through the roof. Assuming, that is, Wade can stay healthy and prove that he’s still at an All-Star level in a season when he turns 34.

That age and the questions about his durability are why Heat president Pat Riley was only too happy to give Wade the bump for next season, while also keeping his options open for the Summer of 2016 free agent-palooza. Then Riley went right from the handshake on the deal to boarding a plane for L.A. where he was scheduled to have dinner Thursday night with free agent LaMarcus Aldridge.

From the moment that LeBron James turned his back on the Heat to return to Cleveland, there was no way Riley was going to allow his team to wallow in mediocrity for long. Since missing the playoffs last season, the Heat have gotten point guard Goran Dragic to re-sign for five years and $90 million and had talented rookie Justise Winslow fall in its lap at the No. 10 pick in the draft. Pencil in a recovering Bosh (blood clots) and center Hassan Whiteside, entering the last year of his contract, and the Heat have an opening night lineup that could probably stand toe-to-toe with any team in the Eastern Conference.

According to reports, Wade has lost 10 pounds so far in his commitment to getting back into top physical condition and now he’s again a key part of a team that can make noise. Without Bosh at the end of the season, Wade showed that he was still capable of performing at a high level and now going into his 13th NBA season has a platform to shine.

Wade simply wasn’t going to get a longer term deal from any other team that paid him top dollar for 2015-16, leaving only the alternative of taking less to go elsewhere — Cavaliers, Lakers, Clippers — out of spite.

Now the franchise icon gets to set himself up for a chance at the multi-year commitment next summer, while Riley and the Heat keep doing the full-tilt boogie to get back in the ring business. That’s a win all around.

14 Comments

  1. Robert says:

    We keep hearing about the amount of money that will be available next year after the salary cap is raised. The NBA has already set the market value for “Star” players when they allowed the Clippers to be sold for 2 billion dollars. Donald Sterling only paid 27 million dollars for the Clippers. I hope NBA “Star” Players realize they are in a great position to change how NBA players negotiate contracts. Over the next 10 years (820 games) who will be the 1st “Billion Dollar” player?

  2. Truth says:

    STARTERS got this totally wrong! Good for D Wade and the Heat.

  3. many says:

    I cant Believe wade is not getting max but bosh is getting the max deal with the heat. Bosh has an equal durability compared to wade. Wade sacrifice allot of money in previous seasons.
    This is a perfect example why we should not be mad at any player for leaving a team. teams ask allot of player and treat players as expendables

  4. jorge says:

    Nobody can beat the Cavs if they are healthy.
    They can compete? Yes, buy i don’t see any team winning 4 games to LBJ Love and Irving healthy. Plus Mozgov Thompson Shumpert and Delly doing the dirty work and now they are hungry and know they can beat anybody. The only way to stop the Cavs is when LBJ shoot 35 times and you stop the others guys but with Irving and Love he is not going to do that again. I heard that Mo Williams and Prince wants to play with LBJ thats a good veterans. We don’t know if JR is going to play but imagine… Mo Williams, JR, Prince, Thompson and Verajao thats a good veteran bench that can give you good 20mts.

  5. Undeniable Truth says:

    The truth is that wade has sacrificed alot of money over the past few years in order to bring in A-list players and contend for a championship. The Heat are just repaying him for his sacrifice for the team, DUH! #CommonSense

  6. MarineFord says:

    Wade’s decision is out of loyalty and respect for a team that took care of him for the past years. Yes, he is a great player. The envy of all teams struggling to record more ticks in the W column. But this move by Wade clearly puts him on another level. His dedication in the game is not derailed by the salary he gets (though the salary difference with Dragic is really unnerving) but it shows the kind of man Dwade has become. He is a heat. Before and now.. No one knows what the future holds.. But I’d like to see him get a 4th ring. or more.. 🙂

  7. old hoosier says:

    G Dragic is going to shake up the East, he is a tough, alert point guard & he was t best player on PHX by a lot, but the Suns committed to E Bledsoe instead, their loss is Miami’s gain

    • lbj says:

      Kobe and Wade? Same position? Same team? Same injury susceptibility? Both of them needs the ball?

      Success!

  8. harriethehawk says:

    That’s a good ending. I knew the Heat would take care of him. Even if for one year. That’s fair.

    • manuel Mercado says:

      No, IT IS NOT FEAR. DRAGIC HAS N OT DO ANYTHING FOR THE HEAT AND IS GOING TO RECEIVE 18 MILLIONS PER YEAR.
      DWYANE JUST 16 FOR A YEAR AND GAVE MIAMI ALL HIS TALENTED CAREER . AND IS THE HEAT INSPIRATION LIKE LEBRON IN CLEVELAND. IT’S NOT FEAR.

      • VALDO says:

        I agree man. I guess this is not right.

      • WadeFan says:

        Agreed. Wade have done so much for Miami. I guess they were really pressured to do well to Wade because if they did wrong, the community would have noticed and taken that into account. Wade its been the face of the franchise for a long time, even when Lebron was there, people still was calling the Heat Wade’s team.

      • lbj says:

        I’m not sure if it’s FEAR or FAIR. Are you?