In just a little over two weeks, the Miami Heat will begin their first training camp in 13 years without Dwyane Wade on the floor. It is a strange fact that will take fans of the game maybe months to adjust to as Wade begins his next chapter in Chicago.
The Palm Beach Post spoke with Pat Riley — who, by the way, is currently on a Mediterranean five-day cruise party for Magic and Cookie Johnson’s anniversary; you know, like you do — about the Heat’s summer, and while he hinted that he regrets how things went down in the end with the Heat letting Wade depart instead of shelling out the contract he wanted, he’s definitely moving on. Riley sent a message.
“No apologies, no regrets – except for one – no tears,” Riley told me today, obviously referring to losing franchise icon Dwyane Wade to the Chicago Bulls. “Good luck. We move on. Players come and go, but franchises move on.”
This is the way that historic franchises regard themselves, however. The Lakers – who Riley also won championships with — conduct themselves in this same manner. The logo always comes before the player and no player is greater than the franchise. On one hand, it sets a tone of accountability and control. That element of doing things a certain way helps with situations like when LeBron James came and faced more organizational discipline than he had before. He grew from that.
In this instance, though,it doesn’t seem like discipline, it still seems like pride. Dwyane Wade is the kind of player that you make exceptions for. He is everything to the Heat. Or he was.
But like Riley said, you move on. In two weeks, they’ll move on to whatever comes after the franchise’s most iconic player leaves.
Courtesy: CBS Sports