Sunday, November 27, 2011

38: Dwyane Wade

Dwyane Tyrone Wade was the fifth pick in the loaded 2003 NBA draft. Dwyane should have been selected lower than the likes of Darko Milicic. Wade is possibly the leagues best all around player and has been great since his rookie year. Dwyane lead the Heat to a 42-40 season and a playoff berth that was extended to the Eastern Conference Semi-Finals. In Wade's sophomore season (dubbed as the hardest by some) he improved from a 16-4-5 on 48% shooting to a 24-5-7 and even improving his field goal percentage by one and All-NBA and All Defensive second teams. In year two with the help of newly acquired Shaquillle O'Neal the heat improved by seventeen wins, and swept the New Jersey Nets and Washington Wizards before being defeated by the Detroit Pistons in seven games. Had Wade been healthy against Detroit that may have swung the results. By his third year Dwyane Wade had become one of the brightest burning stars in the NBA, He improved his numbers yet again throwing together a 27-6-7 on 50% shooting. He then became known as a great playoff powerhouse when he brushed off a severe knee bruise and a few other injuries to chew up and spit out the Chicago Bulls, after that he moved on to devour the same Detroit Pistons that bounced him from the playoffs the year before (even though they did not look the same). After that Wade, Shaq and co. went to the NBA Finals and thrashed Dallas, In games three, four and five Wade dropped 42, 36 and 43. In game six Dwyane Wade was the center of Dallas' defensive scheme which lead to Gary Payton hitting a clutch mid range jumper that won the game and a blocked alley oop by Wade to seal the Mavs fate. Wade became the fifth youngest player to ever win the Finals MVP, wrapped up the third highest Finals scoring average ever having 34.7 PPG.

     In 2007 "Flash" took a a beating every game, leading to NBA fans hoping it wouldn't be Penny Hardaway all over again. "Flash" missed a total of thirty one games but still capturing All-NBA and All-Star honors (The only other to complete this feat was "Pistol" Pete Maravich in 1977-78). Wade was sidelined with a major  shoulder injury, when asked whether he would undergo surgery or rehabilitate it, Wade chose to rehab. Wade had a stellar season putting together a 27-5-8 on 50% FG adding two steals in the process, Dwyane "Flash" Wade also lead the league in player efficiency rating. No easy feat! In the playoffs Wade averaged a 24-5-6 while being swept by the Chicago Bulls. In the off-season Wade went through surgery to repair his left shoulder and left knee in which he suffered "Jumper's Knee" forcing him to meet USA  Basketball's qualifying tournament that summer.

     After going through rehab Dwyane Wade returned more effective than ever before, He returned from the US Olympic team after leadding it in scoring. Early in the year Dwyane Wade became the second player in NBA history to puta 40 point, 10 assist and 5 block game in the books (The other was Alan Adams back in 1976-77). Wade set a record this season when he became the first player to ever record atleast two grand in the point department, five centuries in the assist box, a bill's worth of steals, and the same amount of steals, he also became the first player under 6'5'' to record 100 blocks in a season. Wade chewed up the Charlotte Bobcats to clinch a playoff spot for the Heat. "Flash" scored a career high 55 against the New York Knicks in a 122-105 W, He finished that season with a red hot 30.2 PPG, threw together a sick 7.5 AST, 5 REB, 2.2 STL, and 1.3 BLK. He finished atleast a point, assist, steal or rebound higher than either Kobe or LeBron but somehow both finished higher in the MVP race (he was fleeced!).

    During his 2010 campaign Wade scored his 10,000th point against the Chicago Bulls, Wade was also the All-Star MVP, and hit many clutch shots. Wade averaged a 27-5-7 on 48% shooting, He recorded a career high playoff score of 46 points, Despite averaging 33 PPG the Heat lost to the Celtics. On July 7 it was announced that Wade would come back, and bring LeBron James and Chris Bosh. The "Heatles" reached the NBA Finals... Only to have their fire stomped out by Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks. 

So their you have Wade's career, but I couldn't show you the fact that Wade took  Iverson beatings and still played, he scored with defender draped all over him. He plays great defense with commitment to all aspects of the game and still managed to score 30 PPG (something T-Mac never accomplished) and did everything needed to be one of the greats! Wade has his ring and his skills, He's a top forty all time!

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