A report by Ira Winderman of the Sun-Sentinel documented Wade's comments during Friday morning's shootaround. Wade had previously generated controversy by posting about the team's three-hour bus ride into midtown Manhattan on Twitter (h/t CBS New York). Outsiders initially viewed the commentary as a complaint by Wade, but he clarified what he meant to the press.
I don't think we should be playing tonight. There are bigger things, things of more importance, in this city right now. Obviously, sports are something that takes people's minds away from things but I think there are bigger things that need to be done here in the city.
In essence, Wade was empathizing with what New Yorkers were going through and simply chose his words poorly. It's easy to take his "C'mon man" line out of context, but he meant nothing by it. As Wade explained, he was displaying his frustration for having to play a game amidst such ominous circumstances.
Later, Wade also elaborated on the fact that his own residential area in Miami is affected by hurricane weather all the time, and that he and other members of the Heat are particularly attuned to the issue in that context.
Wade's teammates were there to back him up in his stance, including LeBron James:
...I'm kind of fifty-fifty on it, as well. You know, I'm happy to be here to play a basketball game, but...if the people who are here...could give their efforts to help this city run or help their families come out of the situation, then I think that's more important.
The Knicks had their first game of the season against the Brooklyn Nets postponed due to ramifications of the superstorm, which knocked out power for millions. Miami is coming off a 120-107 win in their home opener against the Boston Celtics, and will look to continue building early momentum in defense of their NBA title.