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2003年,D.Wade在黃金一代中,以第五順位獲熱火選上,13年間,一直鞠躬盡瘁,領軍打拼,第一座總冠軍,距今剛好十年,他幾乎以一人之力,以4:2贏小馬勇奪總冠軍,當時只不過是2006年。

D.Wade一直視熱火為家,愛護邁阿密的一切;2010年,為了配合Pat Riley的Big 3計劃,迎來保殊(Chris Bosh)及勒邦占士(LeBron James),閃電俠自願帶頭少收1,500萬美元,其人工甚至比另外兩位「兄弟」更少。當這份合約面世,大家都預計Wade的犧牲會在約滿後獲補償,預料可獲一紙2,000萬年薪的合約,年期則視乎健康而定。

2011至14年間,熱火四度打入總決賽,並在12-13年間取得連霸,D.Wade將王國與兄弟共享,無私爭勝,有止人認為熱火的重心是LBJ,但在NBA球員及球迷心目中,Wade才是熱火的No.1。就算其快絕的第一步隨年月減慢,他仍是東岸最可怕的得分後衛之一,也是極少數我尊敬的NBA球星。

2014年,熱火在總決賽不敵馬刺後,LBJ選擇「愛回家」,重返出身地克利夫蘭,熱火的Big 3計劃正式玩完,Wade沒有隨之而出走,也沒有如2010年減薪簽約時所預計般,爭取一紙合理的2,000萬年薪,而是為了球隊能找到適合的自由身,保持競爭力,寧願提早跳出合約,再一次自願減薪;這次Wade簽的是兩年3,110萬美元的合約,少拿了至少1,100萬。我記得在簽約之後,Wade在Ig上載了一張他站於三面冠軍旗幟下的相片,上面寫道:Home Is Where The Heart Is… My Home,My City,My House,而其中一個hashtag,是HeatLifer

hpg1011_welcome_rileyspoelstrajameswadebosharison_100709Wade and Shaq 2006 Cavs NBA Champion

來到2016年,Wade完成了去年簽下的2,000萬合約,滿以為球隊會如小馬般,給他一份應有的尊重,為34歲的他準備一份足以終老,而且體面的合約,結果是熱火為了追求杜蘭特(Kevin Durant)及留住白邊哥(Hassan Whiteside)再一次希望閃電俠收順一點。據講,起初熱火提供的是1,000萬等級的合約,這種態度,這個價碼,對一個為球會傾盡所有,效力了13年的忠臣來說,不啻是一種侮辱。雖然最後熱火將出價提高,但早已傷透了Wade的心,結果這個HeatLifer,終於選擇回到家鄉芝加哥。

現代社會,員工要講忠誠的確越來越難,有時在老闆眼中,反而成了愚忠,成了省錢的最佳方式,當利用價值一完,就一腳踢走。2010年,Pat Riley稱Wade為國之干將,隊之基石,幾年之後呢?萊利說他「得知」Wade的離隊,很傷心,不能相信,他永遠都記得2006年第六場的那一幕,也明白Wade為何離開。萊利再補充,自己永遠都會是Wade的教練,永遠!

或者NBA是個商業世界,可也同時是個運動世界,當為錢而出賣球員,也就不能怪球員也只向錢看。萊利的眼中只有冠軍,既然球隊不夠好,他就毅然下注,將一切清空,然後期望下年一舉吸引所有大牌來投,再次火速組成足以封王的勁旅。這場賭博,與KD加盟勇士十分相似,但更為兇險。

萊利或許是《教父》中的馬龍白蘭度,昔日豪氣干雲,強援於他眼底不過棋子,總是擲下一句:I’m going to make him an offer he can’t refuse.可是錢到盡頭尚有情義,今日卻是恩斷義絕,叫球員寒心。要是來季熱火徒擁薪資而簽不到球星,實在怪不了誰。

離開熱火,Wade最捨不得一班球迷,所以在周三也親自撰文,多謝熱火fans。在2003的黃金一代中,一直為球會、為兄弟而犧牲的D.Wade,最值得我們尊敬。

 

Dear Miami,

 

This has been an extremely emotional and tough decision to come to. After 13 years, I have decided to embark on a new journey with the Chicago Bulls. This was not an easy decision, but I feel I have made the right choice for myself and my family.

 

I started my NBA career with the Miami Heat in 2003 and it has been an honor to have played with them and help build a winning franchise with three NBA championships. I look back with pride and amazement at all we have accomplished together. I want to express my gratitude to the Arison family, Pat Riley, Coach Erik Spoelstra, the coaching staff, and the entire Miami Heat organization.

 

From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank the Miami community and especially #HEATNATION for all of their love and support over the years. It has been truly incredible. I am deeply moved and appreciative of the positive messages from my fans expressing that they want what’s best for me and I know they will support my decision. The memories including championship parades and five conference titles are incredible moments we have shared that will always remain close to my heart as I begin the next chapter of my life.

 

Growing up in Robbins, Ill., I never dreamed that an NBA career could have even been possible and that one day I would wear a Chicago Bulls jersey. Watching the Bulls growing up inspired me at an early age to pursue my dream of becoming a basketball player. My most treasured memories were watching my dad play basketball on the courts of Fermi Elementary School and developing my game at the Blue Island Recreation Center. I have never forgotten where I came from and I am thankful to have an opportunity to play for the team that first fueled my love of the game. Many of my family members still live in Chicago and I am excited to return home to a city very close to my heart.

 

I look forward to returning to my roots and to what lies ahead.

 

Much Love and Respect,
Wade

仙道彬
《蘋果》籃球專欄作家,情迷NBA,執着本地籃球,最愛落場打波。為九十年代的籃球、漫畫、電影、音樂,還有美好的香港着迷。
仙道彬