Dwyane Wade says he moved out of South Florida because his family wouldn’t be accepted there

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Shortly after retiring from the Miami Heat in 2019, Dwyane Wade purchased a minority stake in the Utah Jazz, which came as a surprise to Heat fans.

He recently told People magazine that he ended up leaving South Florida partly because his “family would not be accepted or feel comfortable there.”

One would’ve thought that Wade and his family would be beloved in all of South Florida, as he is arguably the greatest player in Heat history and helped bring them each of their three NBA championships.

He is regarded by many as the third greatest shooting guard of all time, and basketball fans throughout South Florida will always cherish the memories he created for them.

One thing he was seemingly referring to in his comment about Florida not accepting his family is his transgender child Zaya, who started to identify as a girl in 2020.

While the elder Wade and his wife have been very supportive of the younger Wade’s decision, the issue of people transitioning from one gender to another, especially as a child, is a very contentious issue in America, and it has inspired lots of passion across the political spectrum, especially from the hard right.

Such activity is perhaps most prominent in Florida, where Gov. Ron DeSantis has branded himself as an opponent of the LGBTQ community, a community that the elder Wade and his wife Gabrielle Union have helped support.

But there is no doubt that the elder Wade was a force on the basketball court for his 16 seasons, most of which were spent in Miami.

When the eight-time All-NBA selection arrived for the 2003-04 season as the No. 5 pick in the 2003 NBA Draft, the team was in disarray years after it had been a perennial contender in the Eastern Conference.

But the 13-time All-Star showed he was special as a rookie with some clutch performances in the playoffs, and with Shaquille O’Neal coming to town the following season, it was only a matter of time before the Heat would rise to the top.

They won their first world title in 2006 behind one of the greatest NBA Finals performances ever from the elder Wade. After a brief down period, he then teamed with LeBron James in Miami to deliver back-to-back Larry O’Brien Trophies in 2012 and 2013.

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Robert is a native of Santa Monica, Calif. and a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara. He has been an avid NBA fan since he was a little kid in the mid '90s, and during that time he has lived through the Alonzo Mourning, Dwyane Wade and LeBron James era of Heat basketball. He feels strongly that the NBA and sports aren't just entertainment, but also a means for learning life lessons.