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Miami Heat

#OneLastDance: The final chapter of Dwyane Wade and the Boston Celtics

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Dwyane Wade has gone against a number of eras of Celtics basketball (NBA Getty Images)

Dwyane Wade stepped on the parquet floor at TD Garden for the last time Monday night when the Miami Heat visited the Boston Celtics.

Prior to his last game in Boston, Celtics General Manager Danny Ainge presented Wade with a piece of the 2008 floor at the Garden.

Two nights later, Wade and the Heat will host the Celtics at AmericanAirlines Arena - the 46th and final time the 16-year veteran will face off against them in the regular season. Add in 23 postseason meetings over four series, and Wade has only played against just two franchises more than he has against Boston (Indiana and Chicago).

It's no secret that Boston has been a longstanding rival throughout Wade's career. Fittingly, both the Heat and Celtics have plenty to play for as the 2019 postseason nears.

From his second-ever game as a pro to years of battles with the Big Three to facing a player that grew up idolizing him, there is no shortage of memorable moments between Wade and the Celtics.

Let's take a look back…

Oct. 29, 2003 - The First Meeting

One night after scoring 18 points in his NBA debut against the Sixers, Wade and the Heat travelled to the FleetCenter to take on the Celtics as they opened their season.

Wade struggled as rookies sometimes do, scoring just five points (on 2-for-12 shooting) in 34 minutes as Miami lost by 23 points to Boston, who was led by 23 points from Paul Pierce.

Pierce would win this first battle, but there would be plenty more to come.

April 25, 2010 - Playoff Career High

It was the third year of Boston's "Big Three" Era, and the No. 4 seed Celtics were on a mission to return to the NBA Finals. Wade and the fifth-seeded Heat were the first team in the way.

Down 3-0 after a tough home loss in Game 3, Wade responded the best way he knew how: In 43 minutes of action, the future Hall-of-Famer finished with a postseason career-high 46 points to go along with five rebounds and five assists, leading the Heat to a nine-point win to extend the series.

The Celtics would go on to win the series in five games and represent the East in the 2010 Finals, but Wade's performance against a staunch defence is certainly one to remember.

MORE: The memories from Wade's career will be long-lasting

May 11, 2011 - Getting Over the Hump

For the second consecutive year, Wade and the Heat met the Celtics in the postseason. This time was a little different, though - the Heat added reigning MVP LeBron James and Chris Bosh to the fold, forming a big three to rival that of the Celtics.

Prior to the 2011 East Semifinal series, Wade and James were a combined 0-3 in playoff series with Boston, but it was pretty evident that this year would be much different.

With a 3-1 series lead in Game 5, Miami trailed Boston by five points with just over three minutes left. The Heat closed the game on a 15-0 run to win by 10 points and advance to the Eastern Conference Finals.

Wade finished the series averaging a team-high 30.2 points to go along with 6.8 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 2.0 steals.

Oct. 27, 2016 - Bulls Debut

Wade shocked the world in the 2016 offseason, leaving Miami after spending the first 13 seasons of his career with the Heat to sign with his hometown Bulls.

Poetically, Wade made his Chicago debut in front of the home crowd against the Celtics, a team that featured a second-year guard named Terry Rozier. Rozier, who was 9-years-old when Wade made his NBA debut, has long considered him an idol and inspiration to play the game.

While Rozier finished with eight points, Wade put forth quite the performance himself.

In 32 minutes of action, Wade finished with 22 points, six rebounds, five assists and one dagger 3-pointer to put the Celtics away for good.

MORE: The most clutch buzzer beaters in Wade's career

April 18, 2017 - Igniting the Eighth Seed

Wade returned from an elbow injury just in time for the 2017 playoffs, where the eighth-seeded Bulls were set to meet the No. 1 seed Celtics. Chicago came out of the gates firing, stealing home court advantage in Game 1, putting Boston on notice.

In Game 2, the Bulls again made a statement by earning a 14-point win over the Celtics to take a 2-0 series lead. Wade finished Game 2 with a team-high 22 points (on 9-for-16 shooting) to go along with four rebounds and two assists.

Despite getting out to a less-than-ideal start, the No. 1 seed Celtics would regroup to win the final four games of the series.

Jan. 10, 2019 - A Flashback Performance

A week before his 37th birthday, Wade and the Heat hosted the Celtics with the opportunity to get back to .500 for the first time in over two months.

Wade stepped up to the occasion.

In 22 minutes of action off the bench, the three-time champ scored a team-high 19 points (on 8-for-12 shooting) to lead the Heat to a 16-point win over the Celtics. After the game, Wade and Rozier exchanged jerseys, a special moment for a player that has idolized him throughout his basketball career.

MORE: Every jersey swap from Wade's final season

Rozier admitted that his final meeting with Wade on April 3 is "going to be tough," citing the emotions surrounding Wade's "changing the game for me. Then I get to witness this one last dance, and today, the last game against the Celtics."

The 25-year-old guard speaks for many basketball fans in his acknowledgement of Wade's contributions to the game as a whole.

We can all be thankful for the memories, especially the many made in throughout his memorable history with the Celtics.

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