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In August, Dwyane Wade will become immortalized as an inductee into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

The three-time champion and 2006 Finals MVP is a thirteen-time All-Star and eight-time All-NBA member. A two-way star, he's led the league in scoring and is a three-time All-Defensive selection. His impact earned him a spot on the NBA's 75th Anniversary Team.

In a conversation over Zoom, Wade shared his perspective on the next step for Jayson Tatum and what the latter and Jaylen Brown must do to win a championship together. We also spoke about the Chicago native's basketball journey, Heat culture, his relationship with Pat Riley, Damian Lillard, and this chapter of his life. Our discussion's edited for length, clarity, and grammar.

Bobby Krivitsky: The Heat have gone to the NBA Finals two of the past four years. They were a Jimmy Butler pull-up three from representing the East last year too. But it was mainly with internal improvement and a rotation filled with players who went undrafted that they got back to that stage. At the heart of that is the organization's culture. I'm curious what Heat culture means to Dwyane Wade.

Dwyane Wade: One word: accountability. That's it. Everyone says, 'What is Heat culture? What is Heat culture? What does it mean they've got a culture?' They have accountability. A lot of people don't have accountability.

We all know if someone is not on our butt about something, we will take a shortcut -- quick. The Heat don't allow that. They're about accountability. And that builds the culture, right? That makes it easy for Coach Spo (Erik Spoelstra) to implement what he wants to implement. That makes it easy for (Pat) Riley to implement what he wants to implement because everybody that comes in there will have some accountability. And it's accountability to each other, most importantly. And that's Heat culture.


Bobby Krivitsky: And you don't just embody Heat culture, but you're one of the people most responsible for what it is today. Not only because of the success the franchise had while you were in uniform, but the sacrifices you made on the court, and from an ego perspective, and playing through injuries without making excuses. So how do you view your impact on Heat culture?

Dwyane Wade: Well, of course, you know, I've had a huge impact on the Heat culture. I took the baton that was given to me by Eddie Jones, by Brian Grant, that was given to them by Alonzo Mourning, by Glen Rice. All these people who have played, all the great players. Udonis (Haslem) and I took the baton, and we felt some pride with it. And we stood strong with it. And to his 20 years, until this year, he's been holding firm with, 'Hey, this is what accountability looks like here.'

And that's why you're able to have success in an organization like that. When LeBron (James) and Chris Bosh come down, 'Hey, this is how we do it here. This is what accountability looks like. This is what our culture looks like.' And so that was my job. That's what I was taught. And that's what I was told. 'This is what's gonna get me to success?! I got to do this?! Then let me do this.'

And, you know, when you look back at it, and you look at all the success that you've had, it's because of that accountability to yourself. And to not only the organization but to your teammates, as well. So, Udonis and I have carried it, and he's continued to since I retired. And hopefully, Jimmy Butler and the rest of the guys can continue that because that's what we were built on.

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Bobby Krivitsky: What has Pat Riley meant to you? And what are some of the most valuable lessons you've learned from him?

Dwyane Wade: Oh man, I love Pat. I've grown up in front of Pat Riley's eyes. I was 21 years old with a one-and-a-half-year-old and a wife when I first came in. And I went through divorces, custody battles, lawsuits, injuries, tears, we've won championships, we've poured champagne on each other, we've hugged each other, we've given each other, you know, those cheek kisses, we've said, 'I love you.' We've done it all.

We've had spats back and forth in the office. We've had all kinds of things. And ultimately, at the end of the day, Pat Riley has been a big part of my life and helped me understand what it's like to be a man in this world and to be a businessman. And some of that stuff has come with tough love. And we've talked about those. I've had to leave and come back because of tough love. But whatever the case may be, ultimately, when I think of Pat Riley, I think of nothing but good things.

I remember walking into Miami the day after the draft and being in awe of this man. Shaking his hand and understanding that he was the one who was gonna help me accomplish all the things I wanted to accomplish. And so, I can't walk away from Miami, and as I said recently, I can't just take the bad, but I've got to take the good too. And it was a lot of good that we built together. And so, I'm thankful for that man.

Bobby Krivitsky: Basketball fans around the world feel, thank God everything is on good terms, and that we see you guys together, we see you at Heat games. It's important. And it's the way that it should be, given what you mean to each other, what you've accomplished together, and what you still mean to that organization and that fan base. So, it's really cool to see.

Dwyane Wade: Thank you.

Bobby Krivitsky: Looking at the present NBA landscape here in late June, Damian Lillard is reportedly about to meet with Trail Blazers general manager Joe Cronin. What would you tell Lillard about spending his whole career in one place vs. giving himself a better chance at a championship?

Dwyane Wade: Oh, I don't know. I don't think you need to tell Dame that -- it's his career, and he has, you have a vision for how you want it to go, and you try to accomplish that. And Dame has been trying to accomplish his career the way that he wants to see it go. And he has been wanting to see it go in Portland. That's why he's there. And so that's why he's been there.

And there's always gonna be talk about what someone should do. Kevin Garnett did this; this guy did this; LeBron went and did this. Dame has to do what Dame wants to do and understand that he gets one of these careers. You get one shot at this. And how does he want to see it go, how does he want to see these next, I don't know, five to 10 years go; however much longer he's got. I don't even know what year he's in. 

And that's something that we'll all have to wait and see. And everybody has to respect whatever that decision is. And whether you like it or not, you have to respect that the decision will be all what Dame wants to see for Dame's career and no one else's.


Bobby Krivitsky: Like you, Jason Tatum quickly became the face of a franchise. And you both put so much into being well-rounded stars. What's the next step for him as he works toward a Hall of Fame career and tries to become a champion?

Dwyane Wade: Yeah, next up is showing up next year and doing it all over again. Head up high, keep taking the hits, keep learning from them. I think it's a challenge. We have challenges in life. Right now, he's going through a challenge. He's had a lot of success in this game but hasn't had the ultimate success I'm sure he wants. He wants to play for that championship. He wants to win that championship.

But he's had a lot of times where he's been right there. And a lot of people like to talk about it like that's a bad thing. No, please give me a lot of opportunities at it. And hopefully for him, and he's one of my favorite players in the NBA, he's one of my favorite people in the NBA to communicate with and to talk with, to do anything with, and I want to see him get everything he wants from the game. But you've got to have patience with it as well. Your career doesn't look like someone else's; it just doesn't. 

And so, his biggest obstacle next year is showing up next year; getting back to work and getting back to the grind, getting back to the day-to-day. Put your best foot forward. And you know what, if you get an opportunity again, hopefully, the results can be different for you.

Bobby Krivitsky: Yeah, I think it's worth, especially for fans, to remember, he's 25, and you did, but star players typically don't win an NBA title before about 27.

Dwyane Wade: Yeah, no, it doesn't really -- I got lucky that, one, I had the team that I had. I'm not going to discredit my teammates. I mean, I had Gary Payton, Alonzo Mourning, and Shaquille O'Neal. These are legends. I had Antoine Walker, James Posey, and Jason Williams. So, I had a great team. Shoutout to the Heat for making sure that they felt I was ready, and they gave me a team and a leader in Shaq that could help lead me until I was ready. And at 24 years old, I was ready. 

But that's my journey. And yes, I do feel a pride about that, that I was 24 and I put on that way. But that doesn't make it better than someone who does it at 29, 30, 31; it doesn't matter. If you can accomplish it, and you've got the right team, and everything matches up at the right time, and it's right there for you, go get it. And I was able to go get it at 24.

Bobby Krivitsky: And speaking of that 2006 championship, you've described winning that as a moment that felt like the end of losing for you. That, after coming so close in high school and AAU, you go to the Final Four with Marquette, not getting to the mountaintop until then. And then, once you achieve that and climb the summit, you feel the previous chapter was done for you.

Tatum and Jaylen Brown have gone to the Eastern Conference Finals four times in their first six years together and got within two wins of a title in 2022. But what has to change? Or where does their partnership have to improve for them to go from consistently getting close to breaking through and winning a championship?

Dwyane Wade: I don't know. I'm not in that locker room with those guys. I don't know that relationship. I'm a fan. And so, I don't necessarily have an answer for how it needs to change. But understand everything has to be aligned for you to win. You don't just win because you have talent. You don't just win because that's what you want to do. Everything has to align. You've got to be healthy at the right time. You've got to be making shots at the right time. Like, there are so many things that come into play for you to win a championship. It's not just being the best team. It's not just being the best player. And it's not just because, 'Hey, I want it.' Well, a lot of people want it.

And so, for those guys, as I said, they just have to continue to keep showing up. Continue to keep putting in the work. Continue to keep believing in something. And continue to keep learning from it, learning from the game. Because what you're going to have to do once you get that trophy, you're going to have to do it all over again next year anyway. So do it all over again this year. 

And once you get it, you know you worked for it. You know you earned it. You know you sacrificed for it. And it feels better. And this is a part of their story and their journey. I hope one day I get to see those two young men hoist that trophy because they're two of my favorite players to watch.


And while Wade, a minority owner of the Utah Jazz, couldn't comment on the Celtics trading Marcus Smart or acquiring Kristaps Porzingis, he conveyed the following.

Dwyane Wade: I like to say the game of basketball is a year-round thing. It's exciting all year round. And it's a good time to be a fan of the game. And I follow the stories; I enjoy the stories. And I want to watch and see what happens. I've got friends that just got traded on other teams. And I can't comment on the trade, but I'm happy for them if they're happy. And you just want to see them play well and play good basketball. So ultimately, it's all good for the league because the league is continuing to grow, and we're all benefitting from the growth of the league, and that's what we want to see.

Bobby Krivitsky: You're someone who, as a kid, you sacrificed hanging out with your friends in the summer to train with your high school assistant coach Gary Adams, working towards your dream. You're a big believer in not taking any shortcuts. How does Thorne, a leader in developing innovative, personalized health solutions, align with your philosophy and your approach?

Dwyane Wade: Yeah, man, I, you know, the shortcuts, it won't get you where you ultimately want to go. You can cut a line, but eventually, someone's gonna catch you, and you'll have to go back to the back of the line. So, you know, it's about the process for me. And it's been about the process of my career, and to accomplish the things that I accomplished, it's about showing up every day. Understanding that I had a bigger picture, I had a bigger goal, which was ultimately to be the greatest that I can be and to win championships and all that. But it was an everyday process. And so that's how Thorne aligns with my life now.

Dwyane Wade Making Smoothie with Thorne Daily Greens Plus

This is an everyday thing. For me to get the ultimate out of these products, for me to get the ultimate out of my body, and why I'm using Thorne and why I need Thorne, is it's something I got to do every day. And it's something that I'm learning. That I've never done before. So, this is new information for me. And I'm trying to share that information with other men out here. Because you know what, it's okay that we take care of ourselves too. We can care about ourselves. And we can care about our bodies. And obviously, I talk about all the things on the outside that I do to take care of myself, but nothing is more important than the inside. And this was my journey into better health care and better health and wellness for myself.

Bobby Krivitsky: And that ties perfectly into my next question because it is so important to take care of yourself physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, and Thorne has so many wide-ranging products that cover all of this. So, to people who aren't particularly familiar with Thorne, let alone how to best tackle these different areas of their lives, what are some of Thorne's products you recommend?

Dwyane Wade: If you go on Thorne's site, you'll see the Thorne x Dwyane Wade partnership. And you know, I was able to talk with different professionals at Thorne and kind of talk about, one, ask questions about what is, what is in some of these things that I've been taking already before I was even a partner. But two, 'Hey, these are the things that I need. And so, we know this is -- I need this for my joints because they hurt. I need this for my bones because I've had multiple surgeries, and my bones are rubbing against each other; it's bone on bone. I need more energy. I need more focus.'

And so, my lineup is pretty, not intense, but it starts with a shake in the morning. And so outside of the spinach and the bananas and the things that I put in there that come from the earth, it's what else can I add to it. And so, I add, I think it's curcumin. I put that in early on. And that's a lot about my bones and my joints and things like that.

ResveraCell: that's one of them that I use, and I use that because of energy. I use that because I want to age a certain way. Like, Bobby, I want to age healthily. I want to be a great good looking older man, and I want to be a healthy older man. And so I look for these products and say, 'Okay, you have that in there, let me add that, throw that on top of the shake.'

And one I always talk about is my Daily Greens Plus. That's one of the most important things for me because of all the ingredients that are in there. And one thing that kind of scared me away from this whole world of supplements that are in my life was what I thought that I was gonna have to take to do that. I was like, I'm gonna have to take like 30 to 40 pills, and I'm not a good pill taker. And once I was able to find certain pills and certain things, and when I was able to find certain supplements that are easy to put with water and just stir and let's go, it becomes easy for you to take care of yourself. 

So, I'm able to, 'Hey, let's start, let's go, but I get these 28 ingredients in me, and these ingredients will get me the focus I need, the energy I need, and all these things that I'm aiming for. Those are some of the products that I use, and I use others as well, but it's part of my repertoire.

Bobby Krivitsky: When it comes to some of these products and what you've incorporated into your daily routine, what should people know if they go and order any of these about how quick or how patient they'll need to be about feeling the difference?

Dwyane Wade: Yeah, obviously, when it comes to product, you have to be patient. You're not going to just pop a bag open, put in some water, and be like, 'Oh my God, I'm going to the NBA.' It doesn't happen that way.

But I will say, the information to understand what you're looking for is important. And so, let's take someone who's looking for, like me sometimes. As I get older, I'm forgetting things. I have a mental fog. So I'm looking for something to help me have a clearer mind. I need a clearer mind to go through the day, to be able to go through the interviews, to be able to be a father, and so now I get a chance to look and say, 'Okay, what products does Thorne have that helps me get a clearer mind?'

And this is something that I should want to take every day. Because I know if I do something every day, if I put in the hours, and I understand the work that comes from it, right? And it's no different from your body. And so these are the things. And that's what I love about Thorne; the information is right there. It's in bold print; it's not hiding the information from you. This is what it is and this is what I'm looking for. And so, I think that's it, man, for me, that's been one of the coolest things about this process. And knowing that it changes, depending on the week, depending on the day, depending on the month. And so I can be like, 'Hey, I'm starting to feel this now I need this,' and I can go find what product has those things in it.

Further Reading

Jaylen Brown Wants Record-Setting Contract with Celtics to Spark Revolutionary Goals

Evaluating Celtics' Options in Free Agency

Why Celtics Should Enter 2023-24 Season Optimistic About Most Important Area of Improvement

Marcus Smart Reflects on His Time with Celtics: 'I Left Everything I Had'