Dwyane Wade Honored by Heat with Tribute Video During Jersey Retirement Ceremony

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistFebruary 23, 2020

MIAMI, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 21:  A general view of the banner for Dwyane Wade retired jersey which was revealed during the Miami Heat Dwyane Wade L3GACY Celebration at American Airlines Arena on February 21, 2020 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Michael Reaves/Getty Images

There will never be another No. 3 on the Miami Heat.

Miami raised Dwyane Wade's No. 3 jersey to the AmericanAirlines Arena rafters during halftime of Saturday's game against the Cleveland Cavaliers, further cementing his status as one of the most iconic players in franchise history.

While he played for his hometown Chicago Bulls in 2016-17 and the Cleveland Cavaliers for part of the 2017-18 season, Wade will forever be remembered as a defining member of the Heat.

After his jersey was lifted to the rafters, Wade took the microphone and gave an emotional speech thanking his family, the fans, his former teammates and his former coaches, among others:

He was a three-time champion, NBA Finals MVP, eight-time All-NBA selection, scoring champion, 13-time All-Star and three-time All-Defensive selection while wearing a Miami jersey, serving as the tie between eras as a key playmaker alongside Shaquille O'Neal in the mid-2000s and LeBron James and Chris Bosh in the early 2010s.

Saturday was the first game at AmericanAirlines Arena that Wade attended since his final one as a player on April 9, 2019.

"I knew that my first game back would be my jersey retirement," Wade said, per Anthony Chiang of the Miami Herald. "I didn't want to mess up the excitement of that night."

Chiang noted Wade is the fifth player in Heat history to have his jersey retired, joining the likes of O'Neal, Bosh, Alonzo Mourning and Tim Hardaway.

This was anything but a traditional jersey retirement ceremony, though.

Miami planned a three-day celebration of his career and deemed it Wade L3gacy, which started Friday with a look back at his most legendary moments during "The Flashback."

That led into Saturday's jersey retirement and Sunday's early screening of the ESPN Films documentary D. Wade: Life Unexpected. Ticket proceeds for the Friday and Sunday events will go to the Wade Family Foundation, and the future Hall of Famer was in attendance for the former and will be for the latter.

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