It's not up for debate: Dwyane Wade is the greatest player in the Miami Heat's storied history.
Less than a year after he wore No. 3 for the final time, the Heat raised Wade's jersey to the rafters at halftime of their game against the Cleveland Cavaliers. It's part of a three-day #L3GACY Celebration, an ode to his iconic number that honours his indelible impact on the franchise.
Here's a recap of Night 1:
What began last night, continues tonight. ⚡️#L3GACY Celebration | @Gatorade Zero pic.twitter.com/lvuQFhDZHl- Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) February 23, 2020
After being selected fifth overall in the 2003 NBA Draft, Wade spent 15 seasons with the Heat, earning 13 All-Star selections, eight All-NBA selections and three All-Defensive team selections.
Most notably, Wade won titles in 2006, 2012 and 2013, earning Finals MVP 2006.
Ahead of the momentous night where his jersey would be formally retired, the Heat shared a video of Wade's former teammates and college coach congratulating him.
This is a cant't miss: A few @DwyaneWade's former teammates had some amazing things to say to him ahead of his jersey retirement.#L3GACY | @Gatorade Zero pic.twitter.com/XILRPIiwh0- Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) February 22, 2020
The man of the hour arrives.
Night ✌️. Let's get it! #L3GACY Celebration | @Gatorade Zero pic.twitter.com/8DDkZD1tFj- Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) February 23, 2020
In the crowd? T-shirts with a callback to Wade's "MV3" campaign in 2009.
👀 @AAarena is ready for tonight's #L3GACY Celebration presented by @Gatorade Zero! pic.twitter.com/qqLiUd2bpv- Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) February 23, 2020
The Heat begin the ceremony with a video chronicling Wade's path to becoming a Miami legend. From the 2003 draft, to his final moments in 2019.
It's time to honor our #L3GEND. ⚡️- Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) February 23, 2020
Tune in to @FOXSportsHEAT to see us raise #3 to the rafters of @AAarena! pic.twitter.com/Lj8ACWJVwB
It was only right that Pat Riley, the man who made the decision to select Wade in 2003, was the first to speak.
🏆🏆🏆- NBA (@NBA) February 23, 2020
Pat Riley honors @DwyaneWade, with whom he shares 3 rings. #L3GACY pic.twitter.com/v47u8AFKSZ
Doing the honours of raising No.3 is Wade's wife Gabrielle Union and and their daughter.
The No. 3 will hang forever. ⚡️- Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) February 23, 2020
Congratulations on a #L3GENDARY career, @dwyanewade! pic.twitter.com/GIAke3IS4u
The newest addition to the rafters inside @AAarena!- Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) February 23, 2020
⚡️ @DwyaneWade pic.twitter.com/rfEp8GBIp6
Once it was time for Wade to have the floor, he delivered a passionate memorable speech.
Here are some of the best excerpts:
💪♥️ @DwyaneWade reflects on what he's learned from several of his former teammates. #L3GACY pic.twitter.com/ipMc2Ujdvs- NBA (@NBA) February 23, 2020
⚡️ @DwyaneWade expresses his gratitude towards his family. #L3GACY pic.twitter.com/TUQnRpUDc3- NBA (@NBA) February 23, 2020
"The most important thing is to try to inspire others, so they can be great in whatever they choose to do."- NBA (@NBA) February 23, 2020
Dwyane Wade closes out his jersey retirement ceremony by quoting the late Kobe Bryant. 💜💛 pic.twitter.com/RpajxuvCuZ
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