ESPN.com noted the veteran scored 15 of his team's final 17 points in the 102-101 win with Joaquin Oliver's name written on his shoes. Oliver was a student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and one of 17 victims who died in a school shooting in Parkland, Florida, on Feb. 14.
"From the standpoint of away from the game of basketball, as I continue saying, just understanding how important we are as professionals," Wade said, per ESPN.com. "And for me, it's just giving whatever I can to people who believe in me, and especially people who were happy about me coming back here [after the trade from Cleveland earlier this month] who embrace me the way that I only can dream of with me coming back home. So just paying some due respect to [Oliver] and his family tonight."
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According to the ESPN.com story, Oliver's parents told the Univision talk show Al Punto their son was a Heat fan and buried in Wade's jersey.
The three-time NBA champion addressed the situation on his Twitter page:
This is Joaquin Oliver. He was one of the 17 young lives that were lost tragically at Douglas HighSchool in Parkland. Joaquin was one of many that i heard was excited about my return to Miami and yesterday was buried in my jersey. This is why we will not just SHUT up and dribble! https://t.co/X0tfTTao33
Will Manso of Fox Sports Heat tweeted about how everything unfolded, underscoring how amazing it was: "The amazing part of night is that it comes a day after Wade got emotional in talking about Joaquin Oliver, who was killed in the Parkland tragedy and was buried in a Wade jersey. D-Wade dedicated rest of the season to him. Then leads Miami to huge win. Can't write that script."
Actress Gabrielle Union, who is Wade's wife, responded on Twitter as well:
Wade finished with 27 points on 10-of-16 shooting from the field, which marked his highest scoring total in a season that saw him traded from the Cleveland Cavaliers back to Miami—where he played the first 13 years of his career—earlier this month.
The eighth-seeded Heat are now just a game behind the seventh-seeded 76ers in the Eastern Conference's playoff race as a result of the win.