Pearl Jam is finally on its way to Miami next week after what feels like forever. But this time, the godfathers of grunge may not escape with simply getting drunk at Club Deuce and jamming out in Little Haiti. Vedder and company will have to dribble through Dwyane Wade first – as yesterday the Miami Heat shooting guard raised the most kind-hearted challenge in hardwood history.
“What’s up Eddie?” Wade asks in the video posted to the Heat's Facebook page. “This is Dwyane Wade...” he adds, you know, just in case you aren't familiar. Flash then flashes the key to “his house” – the American Airlines Arena, where Pearl Jam will perform – and invites Eddie and the band to "come and shoot hoops” whenever they'd like. “You got the key,” he says. It’s an offer they can’t refuse.
Though they probably should. Standing at a mere five-foot-seven', the 51-year-old Vedder is a clear mismatch in this case. Even if he manages to stack his remaining four band members on top of him, creating some sort of grunge skyscraper, Pearl Jam will still surely get its collective ankles broken by D-Wade.
Wade’s words may speak friend, but there’s an insidious insult in this invite — the ten-second opening clip shows Wade draining a game-winning buzzer-beater against Vedder’s darling Chicago Bulls. Wade's a born-and-bred Chicagoan, but his loyalty to the Heat runs a decade deep — almost as long as Pearl Jam’s absence from Miami.
With R. Kelly, Justin Bieber, and Julio Iglesias making their way to the AAA soon, this whole basketball thing could be a fun marketing technique for American Airlines Arena. Want to play the AAA, Julio? First you've got to steal the ball from Justise Winslow. Let's all take a moment to imagine Chris Bosh snapping Bieber's tight white cheeks with a wet towel in the locker room.
Still, Wade will have to get through Pearl Jam first. And we’re not sure Wade knows that bassist Jeff Ament apparently plays hard in the paint and that rhythm guitarist Stone Gossard has been known to hide razor blades in the tongue of his Reebok Pumps, so Dwyane may actually have his hands full.
Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.