Even if Dwyane Wade decides not to hang up his sneakers this season, his NBA career is nearing a graceful end. A decade-and-a-half run as one of the best shooting guards in NBA history is in the rear-view mirror, and now Wade is gearing up for his post-playing days. Whatever he decides to do after basketball, there's no reason to believe he won't absolutely kill it. He's proven to be business-savvy in both his endorsements and investments.
According to Wade, his life after playing will likely take him only a few steps off the court. A few weeks ago, he spoke with Joel Weber of Bloomberg about his desire to dip his toe into NBA team ownership after his playing days are over:
I definitely want to be a part of ownership in the NBA. I'm not going to try to buy a team. I don't have that kind of bread, but I definitely want to be a part of a great ownership group. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is all about players being involved in an ownership capacity. You've got players like Grant Hill involved in the Atlanta Hawks. Shaquille O'Neal is involved in the Sacramento Kings. It's definitely something that I've talked about, some of my friends have talked about. But, first of all, I’d have to be retired. When that time comes...
Hearing that Wade might want to be part of an NBA ownership team isn't all that shocking, but hearing where Wade saw himself getting that opportunity in the future was a bit upsetting: "Seattle. I want Seattle's team, the Sonics, to come back," he told Weber. "I think Seattle is a great basketball town. I would love to be a part of that."
Wait, what? This news came out a few weeks ago, but only now, with the NBA season over and Wade still undecided if he will ever put on a Miami Heat jersey again, is it beginning to hit home.
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Wade shouldn't own a piece of the Seattle Supersonics or his hometown Chicago Bulls. If he's going to dip his toes into the NBA ownership pool, it should be with a stake in the Miami Heat and only the Miami Heat. Full stop.
Wade is the reason the Miami Heat are the Miami Heat. He is the most important person in the history of the franchise. He's the reason Shaq wanted to come to Miami and the reason LeBron James and Chris Bosh came to Miami. Wade has increased the value of the Heat by hundreds of millions of dollars, all by himself. He deserves a special bargain buy-in price for a sliver of the team he put on the map.
Micky Arison bought the Heat for $33 million in 1988, and now the team is worth a reported $1.7 billion. He's made his money in spades. If Wade is willing, Arison should offer a slice of the franchise to his best-ever player so he can stay in Miami forever and continue to build on the culture he helped create.
Nobody wants to see Wade grow old in Seattle while hoisting Supersonics banners. It only makes sense that it would happen in Miami. Arison and the Heat should give Wade a slice of the off-the-court action the minute he decides he's done making his money on the court.