What to Know
- Fans of the Miami Heat are giving mixed reaction to the news that Dwyane Wade is leaving to play for the Chicago Bulls.
Two years after losing LeBron James when the superstar returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers following four seasons in South Florida, fans of the Miami Heat are dealing with the loss of another superstar.
After spending his entire 13 year career with the team, Dwyane Wade is using the “LeBron model” and heading back to his hometown, saying he will agree to a two year, $47 million deal with the Chicago Bulls.
The news that the player nicknamed “Flash” was leaving the one pro city he had ever known has gotten different reactions from the Heat’s fan base. There was a segment of fans that turned on Wade, calling him names and even burning his jersey:
U.S. & World
Wade left for $7 million dollars. Hes owed money, but to leave a fanbase that loves you for $7 million? Thats weak sauce right there — Austin (TMB) (@awillmakeit) July 7, 2016
Other fans were quick to call out those who seemed to have turned on Wade, apparently pointing their anger at the move toward Heat officials, including team president Pat Riley:
Let's get this straight Wade didn't walk away from the heat. The Heat ABANDON him.... — PAY WADE (@Vinny_Bernard) July 7, 2016
You're stupid to hate D-Wade or burn his jersey for leaving. It's the Heat's fault for not giving the superstar the money he deserves. — Christian Clutch (@cfutch04) July 7, 2016
Most fans on social media seemed to understand the reason for the move and thanked the star guard for all he did while playing in “Wade County”:
In 13 seasons with the Heat, Wade helped lead the team to all three of their NBA Championships while being named to 12 All-Star teams and eight All-NBA teams during his career.
While the move is hurtful to longtime fans of the team, it does free up space under the salary cap if the team does make a decision to go after a big name. After losing out on Kevin Durant after the superstar said he’s signing with the Golden State Warriors, Riley and the Heat may go after Durant’s former teammate in Oklahoma City, Russell Westbrook, as a replacement in the lineup for Wade.
If Miami doesn’t make a move in free agency or make a trade, that spot will likely be filled by second year guard Josh Richardson.