For seven seasons, Wade had made a noble habit of sacrificing himself and his personal relationships for the sake of doing what was best for the Miami Heat organization.
Those sentiments don’t seem so prevalent today.
At a time the Miami Heat organization is faltering in every aspect accept financial security, it needs the face of its franchise to step up. It time Dwyane Wade stepped up and fixed what he’s helped brake.
This is the one time in his career he can’t afford to be passive. It’s the one time in his career he needs to really put the Miami Heat organization over everything except his biological family.
Wade Proves He's A Lot like LeBron
The message was loud and clear this past All-Star weekend. Wade felt he wasn’t playing with a full-deck and made it know to Pat Riley, Micky Arison, teammates and anyone else willing to listen to his selfish rant.
“We’re not one of the top teams in the League. You want to have an opportunity every year. You’re not Magic, you’re not Michael, you’re not Larry. You’re not going to win the championship every year. But you do want to have an opportunity to compete for that. I feel like we haven’t had the opportunity since ’06. I feel like, while I’m in my prime, before my prime leaves me in about four or five years, I want to make sure that I can give my all to the organization.”
As much as Wade tried to make it seem like it was about doing what was best for the Heat, the message was evident that he was more focused on “Dwyane Wade” the individual. For the first time in his career, he had crossed over from the realm of “we” and into that of “I.”
He was officially an NBA superstar, ego-driven and all.
Team President Pat Riley and Team Owner Micky Arison were put on notice that Wade wanted more help, as if they needed to be told the obvious, and after a four year drought of not playing past the first round of the NBA playoffs, they would make good on Wade’s request.
This summer they stripped apart a team that had finished 5th in the Eastern Conference the past two seasons. Leaving all but Dwyane Wade and Mario Chalmers as the only guaranteed players to return to a team that would be centered round Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh, and the super talented LeBron “King” James.
The Heat organization did all this with the intent of centering everything round Dwyane Wade.
Wade Owes the Heat More
The Miami Heat is 17 games into the season with what was perceived as a better roster than last year’s club. Their current record is 9-8, one less win than a year ago.
Keep in mind that last seasons Miami Heat team squared-off on nine separate occasions against teams that made the playoffs. This year club has played roughly eight games against teams that are expected to make the playoffs this season.
Their record isn’t the biggest concern, as the team is only 20-percent into their season. They have 65 games to right what is wrong.
Dwyane Wade and his Miami Heat teammates have bigger concerns.
Most noticeable is a lack of leadership and chemistry, a trait that wasn’t a problem the previous two seasons in Miami.
This dilemma is mostly Wade’s fault, as he was too eager to relinquish his leadership duties to LeBron James during a conversation with Steve Smith that also featured LeBron James and Chris Bosh.
Leadership has always been an unwanted burden when it came to Dwyane Wade. It’s not something that comes natural to him.
He prefers to do his leading by example and expects other to follow suit.
That’s fine and dandy when Wade is playing well and making positive plays. When he isn’t however, it leaves his teammates vulnerable to lapses in confidence and efficient play.
That kind of thing can hurt a team when they need answers that a star player isn’t capable of providing through verbal exchanges.
Thus, the Heat have struggled so far this season.
In eight of the Heat loses, Wade has struggled mightily in at least three of them. Hardily room for concern this early in the season, but still it bares cause for concern.
The Miami Heat is stuck with a super-star who wants to lead, but doesn’t know how (LeBron James) and another that has been groomed to lead but doesn’t want to (Dwyane Wade).
Dwyane Wade owes the Heat organization more than this.
Only Wade Can Fix This
The Miami Heat are on the verge of imploding. With the latest incident of players over stepping their boundaries and not understanding their roles on the team, Wade’s good friend is the source of a lot of the Heat’s issues.
In the Heat’s lost to Dallas on Saturday, Erik Spoelstra for the first time this season displayed his displeasures with the efforts of LeBron James. James displayed his displeasures with Erik Spoelstra by giving the Heat’s head coach a blatant shoulder bump.
James clearly overstepped his line as a player and once again exposed what kind of man he truly is.
With the way the media has jumped all over the incident, such behavior can derail a team for an entire season.
Luckily for the Heat, they have more than one Alpha male in its organization besides LeBron James. There’s Pat Riley, and then there’s Dwyane Wade.
Pat Riley could discipline James with a fine or a suspension, or Dwyane Wade can step in as a friend, peer and elder statesman on matters of how the Heat organization handles its business.
With that said. Wade needs to man up and put James in his place. He must fix a problem that he aided in creating.
Wade is the one that clamored about James coming to Miami and how magical it could be.
Wade is the one that endorsed James character.
Wade was the one that has made it his business to defend James and all the unwarranted criticism that followed his decision to join the Miami Heat organization.
Too bad James hasn’t been so eager to show the same kind of admiration and appreciation for what could be one of the greatest eras in NBA history. James has proven that he’s all about “LeBron James” and nothing else.
Well now’s the time for Wade to put James on the back burner and prove that “Dwyane Wade” is all about the Miami Heat.