Just ahead of the trade deadline, the Cleveland Cavaliers cleaned house and sent several players packing, including one half of the team’s Peanut Butter and Jelly duo, Dwyane Wade.
Back in 2003, Wade was selected in the first round as the 5th overall pick by the Miami Heat. From there, the shooting guard earned three NBA championships, one NBA Finals MVP, 12 NBA All-Star appearances and an NBA All-Star Game MVP. However, things took a turn for the worse after 13 seasons with the South Beach team.
In the summer of 2016, during Wade’s free agency, contract negotiations left Wade and Pat Riley in a tough position. But, despite Wade’s love for Heat and his home in Miami, he could not allow himself to be low-balled and snubbed by the team’s owner. Next thing you know, Wade is forced to pack his bags and head to his hometown of Chicago.
However, after one season with the Bulls, Wade picked up and joined forces with his best friend, LeBron James, this time, in James’ hometown. But, as the team struggled throughout the season, Wade was forced to relocate, once again to a very familiar place- Wade County.
Although both Wade and James were consulted before the trade, the decision caught the shooting guard by surprise. But, the baller wasn’t necessarily upset because tensions between him and Riley were settled just one week prior to the trade.
According to USA Today, it was nothing more than a hug that brought the two back to where they needed to be to move forward.
“The hug that we embraced was real and it was all we needed,” Wade said after the trade. “That’s it. That’s all we both need. I walked away and I felt better about everything, without even getting into anything,” he said of the interaction with Riley at the funeral for his longtime agent Henry Thomas.
Now, Wade is back to where it all began.
“I can’t wait to get back to my environment,” Wade told reporters. “I can’t wait to see the smile on my wife’s face when she’s sitting out tanning outside and all those things, and I can’t wait for the drive to the arena that I can make with my eyes closed.”