Before the world found out that LeBron James was going to return to the Cleveland Cavaliers, his good friend Dwyane Wade apparently already knew. Only James didn’t actually tell him, his body language did.
When they were seen together in Las Vegas in early July leading up to James’ decision to rejoin his hometown team, it turns out Wade wasn’t recruiting for the Miami Heat but just being there for his friend.
"When I got back to Miami, we had a long flight back from Vegas," Wade said Friday at his fourth-annual Fantasy Basketball Camp at the Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa in Hollywood, Florida. "So I probably knew then, without him telling me at that moment. You can tell where someone’s heart is and what they’re thinking. I kind of knew at that moment.
"He called me the next day. But I knew then. Obviously, he still had to say the final yea or nay, but I knew. I could tell."
Speaking out publicly for the first time since James’ decision, Wade harbors no ill will toward his former teammate and wishes him the best.
"Me as his friend, I was supportive," the 10-time All-Star guard said. "As crazy as that might sound, I’m supportive of my friend, of doing what makes them happy.
"You gotta do what makes you happy. Selfishly, do what makes you happy, and I think the decision for him to go back home was that thing."
Moving forward, Wade echoed Chris Bosh’s comments made Thursday, saying he’s motivated for next season and is eager to prove doubters wrong about the new-look Heat. With an eye toward reclaiming a larger role on offense, he remains positive about the Heat’s chances with several reinforcements already in place.
"I think our ownership has done a great job so far of trying to not replace but recover from that. The only thing we can do as a franchise and as players is we move forward.
"[Pat Riley] has done a good job. Obviously we still have some work to do but he did his job of recovering as good as you can. It’s our job as players to come back next year and get the continuity that we need early."