Before Dwyane Wade became one of the iconic NBA players today, he was an eager young chap trying to meet some of his heroes. Eddie Jones, his teammate with the Miami Heat, once took Wade to a casino to introduce him to Allen Iverson. And it was one heck of a hilarious encounter.
One of the reasons Wade wore no. 3 on his jersey was because it was Iverson's number. And so Wade did not pass up the opportunity to meet up with the great Philadelphia 76ers guard. Expectedly, Wade met Iverson at a casino.
“So I go with Eddie Jones, and he knew Allen Iverson was one of my favorite players, so he wanted to introduce me. And he introduced me to Iverson right there when they were gambling, so Iverson’s gambling and I’m standing there the whole time. And he threw me a $1,000 chip and was like, ‘Yo, go play this, young fella.’ So I played $500, and I put the other $500 in my pocket, because I didn’t have money like that at the time,” Wade said.
It’s one hilarious story. But we have to give Wade props for acting smart during that encounter. Yes, he was an NBA player bound to make millions of dollars. But Wade did not want to take things for granted. He wanted to secure the money bag first before he fully enjoyed it.
The first chip
Many consider Wade the third-best shooting guard in history. He’s behind the GOAT Michael Jordan and the Black Mamba Kobe Bryant. Third place doesn’t sound too bad when those greats surround you.
While Wade was part of the legendary 2003 NBA Draft Class, it was in 2006 that he set himself apart from LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony, and Chris Bosh, among others. Wade won his first NBA Championship in '06, making him the first from the banana boat crew to win a title.
Many thought LeBron was a lock to be the first guy to win a ring. James was the most hyped prospect in NBA history, but Wade was fortunate enough to land on Pat Riley's team and get Shaq as his teammate. (For those reading in Dallas, yes, and the help of referees who thought he had a subscription for the free throw line.)(For those reading in Detroit, yes, Darko Milicic was the first to win a title from the '03 Draft Class, but let's be real.)
Though Wade won two more titles, his first one will be the most discussed down the road. It is quite rare for an NBA player — just three years in — to understand and play the game at the highest level. It's not that surprising now that we know Wade was mature enough to pocket $500.