Dwyane Wade went through a lot growing up in Chicago. His mother struggled with drug addiction, and there were days when young Dwyane wasn’t sure if she’s coming back. His older sister moved him to his father, who introduced Wade to basketball, and the rest is history.
Getting drafted as the 5th pick in the 2003 Draft was the happiest day in Wade’s life at the time. What’s could top flying back home to Chicago and party with all your friends and family? Well, the greatest of all time, stopping by to show love and support would do it. Wade almost missed out on that.
He was at the party when his cousin found him and told Dwyane that Michael Jordan was in front but couldn’t get in. Let’s assume Dwyane had an alcoholic beverage or two; someone came up to him in Chicago and told him that Michael frikin’ Jordan was outside. No way that’s true, right?
“I remember my cousin came and got me, and he was like, ‘Yo, Jordan’s here. They won’t let him in.’ I’m like, ‘What, man? Stop playing with me.’ And he was like, ‘Bro, I’m serious. Michael Jordan is outside with like 50 people. They won’t let him in.’”Dwyane Wade, via The Athletic
It’s probably not true, but who wouldn’t go check. You don’t want to be the guy who thought he was getting pranked and left Michael Jordan stand outside your draft party, right? When Wade came to the door, he got the most unbelievable explanation.
“So we run out the door, run up front where they won’t let him in. ‘Why y’all won’t let Jordan in?’ Somebody was like, ‘He wouldn’t pay.’ I’m like, ‘What?’ So I run outside, and Michael Jordan is out there on a motorcycle, surrounded by like 30 dudes. I run up to him. I’m in awe, of course, a young kid. And he said, ‘I just wanted to come by and show you some love.’ I think he said something about them trippin’ at the front, or something like that. But he’s like, ‘I just wanted to come by and show you some love. Congratulations on getting drafted.’”Dwyane Wade, via The Athletic
Michael Jordan, not wanting to pay to get in, is one of the most Michael Jordan moves ever. First of all, it was Chicago in 2003, and you’re asking MJ to pay up to get in?? To a draft party of all places?? Second of all, Charles Barkley made it very clear Jordan is, shall we say, prudent with his expenses.
But, word got to Wade, who managed to get out there and have his moment with His Airness. Not a bad way to start an NBA career.