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Dwyane Wade Says He ‘Was the Best Player in the Game’ in 2009
- Updated: January 25, 2019
“At that time, I felt I was the best player in the game,” Wade said. “My confidence was out of the roof, I felt that what I brought to the game was different than other guys. Even though LeBron was LeBron and Kobe was the best of our generation, I felt for those couple years I was dominant and if I had the team around me, I could’ve did it for us. I would’ve been fighting with Boston and Cleveland to get to the Eastern Conference finals.”
There’s no doubt that Wade was one of the best players in the NBA from 2008 to 2010, averaging 28.4 points, 7.0 assists, 4.9 rebounds, and 2.0 steals per game. Still, in a time that was dominated by the conversation of whether James or Kobe Bryant was the best in the league, Wade always seemed just out of that debate.
Looking back, however, it’s clear that he should have been included.
It is also clear that his ability to swallow his pride and play a role in bringing not one, but two All-Stars, in James and Bosh, to Miami in the pursuit of team success required incredible maturity and foresight.
Wade put it in his own words, proving just how intelligent and tactful he is.
“If we make the move [to bring in talent before 2010], it could be good for us, but will it take us where we really want to go? When we all talked about it, it wasn’t,” Wade said. “We didn’t feel it was, so we wanted to be patient and not make a move that would take us out of that window when we got the Big Three era. I had to be patient.”
Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra believed Wade deserved more recognition for his incredible production during that time before 2010.
“Spoelstra says Wade should’ve been league MVP in 2009, the one individual accolade that has eluded him,” Vincent Goodwill wrote.
Regardless of the fact that Wade will never win an MVP award, he will go down as one of the greatest shooting guards of all time.
Considering his apparent natural gift of team management, it will be interesting to see what other kinds of basketball-related awards he could win as he enters the next stage of his career.