Over the last few years it is clear
that the South Florida sports community has grown to love Miami Heat star
Dwyane Wade. Now, with a possible departure from the team this summer, fans are
stepping up their affection for him.
Miami Heat fans started a website
last week called www.wewantwade.com with the endorsement of the Heat
organization to encourage the 2006 NBA finals MVP to remain in South Florida.
Wade is slated to exercise his
right to become a free agent and he’ll be clear to talk with other teams at
12:01 a.m. July 1.
The site gives tips on how to show
affection for Wade from donating money to sending him food. It also advises
against lasting acts such as getting a tattoo with Wade’s likeness or buying a
car for Wade. The site was an instant hit. The Heat said it was overwhelmed
quickly after launch, causing a switch to larger servers.
A graduate of Marquette
University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Wade was enthused by the gesture.
“I thought it was hilarious,”
Wade said. “But I appreciate it. I do, I really do. You get a lot of
people respectful of you and you understand that they want you to be in the
city – whatever city that is. They express that opinion no matter where you go.
I’ll never be surprised of anyone who says it.”
The former league scoring champion
would be better off financially staying with the Heat. Miami can offer Wade a deal for six years
worth about $127 million – more years and more money than any other club could
Free agency is only one significant
issue for Wade this summer. He’s embroiled in a bitter divorce and custody case
in Chicago. In Miami, he is facing a
lawsuit brought by former partners in a failed restaurant deal.