Dwyane Wade is one of the most beloved players in NBA history and a Miami Heat legend. A career without any controversies being a real role model for fans and veteran presence in every team he played made Wade a natural leader. But the only bad stint of his career happened back in the first half of the 2017-2018 season with the Cleveland Cavaliers. After his first season out of Miami in his hometown of Chicago, Wade would decide to join forces with his best buddy LeBron once again, but this time in Cleveland.
It would be an interesting team, with Kyrie Irving being traded to Boston and the Cavs opening a new page. LeBron and Love would be joined with a handful of veterans like Dwyane Wade, Derrick Rose, Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder, and more. It looked great at first, but it was apparent that the fit wasn’t right from the start. Numerous problems and controversies would follow the team for the first half of the season, with the Cavs having a disappointing record and losing convincingly to any good team.
That would result in a trade deadline special with half of the team getting traded away and the Cavs reconstructing the team with younger players around LeBron in the middle of the season. But it was the right move, as they picked up their play, while all the veterans that went into other teams found better-suited roles.
But before the Cavs decide to blow up their roster, the culmination of boiling turmoil that followed the team through the season reached its peak, with several players clashing heads. Most notably, Kevin Love and Isaiah Thomas never managed to get on the same page, as their beef was evident even on the court. Derrick Rose took a break in the middle of the season to get his mind right, and Love was dealing with mental health issues without anybody knowing.
That would result in him zoning out and not being the best version of himself. Wade, who was on the last train of his career to get some more rings to his name, didn’t like that, as he wanted Love to pick it up. So Wade let him know about it and pushed him to get better, not knowing Love had more significant problems on his mind. Recently Wade spoke in an interview with Carmelo Anthony about that time and how he regrets going after Love:
“I had an incident in Cleveland with Kevin Love where I didn’t know that he dealt with or suffered from any mental health issues. I was on him, because I’m an old dude trying to—this is my last ride to win a championship, and I didn’t know what he was dealing with mentally. So we had a very ugly incident as a team that happened that came out in the papers and all those things about it, and then once I left Cleveland, Kevin became more outspoken and became really a voice for mental health. And I didn’t have any idea.”Dwyane Wade, Whats in your Glass?
Wade added how he thinks Kevin probably doesn’t like him as a person because of that and that he wants to apologize to him:
“Kevin Love may not like me as a person because of that moment, but if I ever got the opportunity to see him again, I’d just want to apologize to him because I didn’t know what he was dealing with, and I was just trying to say, ‘We need you, we need you,’ but I didn’t know that he was dealing with something that was so serious that I could not fathom or even know what he had to deal with,”Dwyane Wade, What’s in your Glass?
Since then, Love has been very vocal about mental health issues for players, becoming a spokesman for all the other players dealing with the same problem. It’s nice to see Wade acknowledge his mistake and own up to them. Love never spoke about Wade, particularly, but I’m pretty sure that now he doesn’t have any resentment towards Wade, as he was simply overflown with the competitive spirit and desire to win. At the end of the day, some things are bigger than basketball.