(Image: USA Today)
China. The simple answer is China. As I was scrolling through Twitter this weekend, I came across an article from Sportando Basketball that hinted at D-Wade possibly playing in China for the Xinjiang Flying Tigers next season. Apparently, the Tigers are willing to offer Wade one of the biggest deals in their organization’s history. As of now, Wade is still a free agent and has hinted at retirement multiple times over the past year.
Look, I am not a D-Wade guy in the slightest bit, but playing in China would put a huge dent on his legacy. What other guaranteed hall of famer would have to go play overseas instead of being signed to a small short term deal? I know that these are all rumors and everything as of now, but we are three weeks into free agency and there has been absolutely no noise about teams wanting to sign Wade. Is it likely that the Heat eventually give him a pity offer and maybe let him have a farewell tour season? Yeah, sure. However, Pat Riley is a villain for a reason and I could absolutely see him kicking Wade to the curb.
So just how likely is it that Wade actually plays in China? My guess would be somewhere between 0-1%. Wade has been playing since 2003 and since then has won 3 rings, 2 Olympic medals, a Finals MVP, been a 12-time all-star, and made 8 All-NBA teams. He has accomplished almost everything there is to accomplish in the NBA, all while making millions upon millions of dollars. Like I mentioned earlier, going to China would absolutely tint his legacy because he would be seen as the hall of famer who got ran out of the league, then went to China to get the bag. Plus, him and Melo got drafted the same year, and even HE is wanted by some NBA teams. Wade is way better than Melo, so it would be an overall tough look.
Finally, D-Wade’s son, Zaire, is rapidly becoming one of the top high school recruits. I doubt that Dwayne would leave his son during such an exciting time in his life to go to the opposite side of the planet. Zaire also just transferred to a high school in Florida to play basketball, so that could be a tell tale sign that Dwayne Wade is re-signing with the Heat. This has literally nothing to do with the situation at hand, but Zaire has arguably the strangest full name ever. Zaire Blessing Dwayne Wade. Yup, that’s his real name.
Anyways, if for some reason D-Wade isn’t signed to a team by the time October rolls around, then he should either take the year off or retire. Don’t go to China where your best competition will be Jimmer Fredette. Wade has absolutely nothing to prove if he goes to China and dominates, because that is expected. But hey don’t get me wrong, if D-Wade doesn’t get signed to a team, it could possibly be the funniest story of the entire offseason.