Dwyane Wade's farewell was perfect. Well, almost perfect. His #OneLastDance retirement tour could have used an ending that involved a playoff appearance, but a 30-point performance that included jumbotron messages from everyone from his sons to President Barack Obama and a triple-double in the season finale in Brooklyn Wednesday night will have to do.
The emotional goodbye to Wade was like few events Miami sports fans have ever witnessed. It's hard to imagine a local sports scene that doesn't include #3 picking up a basketball in September. Wade's departure has many asking, What's next? What the heck do we have to look forward to now?
That's a great question. One with a clear answer, unfortunately — Miami sports fans in the immediate future will experience a whole lot of mediocrity. Sadly, that's the scene. There isn't really another professional sports show in town at the moment.
Let's run down the sad list of options that might cheer Miami sports fans up following the departure of their greatest sports star:
The Miami Marlins are smack-dab in the center of a painful, yet needed,
The Miami Dolphins may suck more than the Marlins. They might even try to suck. They're also undergoing a painful rebuild, one that will involve Ryan Fitzpatrick leading the team this fall. Woof. We wouldn't blame you if you skipped this football season and checked back in 2020.
The Florida Panthers have a new coach, Joel Quenneville, who actually has championships on his résumé. But if Panthers fans know one thing, it's you have to wait and see before declaring the franchise on the rise. Hockey will never rule South Florida. This we know. It's just not in our DNA. But even a desperate distraction post-Wade seems unlikely. As with the Marlins, there is the promise a brighter future, though.
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That leaves the Miami Heat, which is still the champion of the South Florida sports world. With a solid core to build around in
The Heat has the most promising future in town. The team has the best young core closest to being championship-ready. It has the best front office, by far. And the Miami Heat, in Micky Arison — far and away — has the best sports owner in town.
If you're interested in positive vibes, exciting sports moments, championships, the next Wade-like Miami sports icon, or just pure entertainment, head to Biscayne Boulevard next season.
Even without Dwyane Wade, the Miami Heat provides the greatest show in town. That should cheer you up.