According to Michael Wallace of the Miami Herald: “The billboard along the 79th Street Causeway is just a few miles from Wade’s North Bay Village home, and is one he is likely to pass often. The billboard features an enlarged portion of a contract with the dotted line left blank. Dwyane Wade’s name appears directly underneath the line. The Heat is calling it the ‘Sign Here’ billboard. Should Wade re-sign with the Heat as expected, team officials will try to get him to also sign the billboard.”
Oh, and about that whole “re-sign with the Heat” thing, Wallace adds: “The Heat will officially offer Wade a six-year contract worth about $125 million just after midnight on July 1. No other team could offer Wade a contract for more years or money.”
But forget about the billboards and the money. Of all the big name free agents — Amar’e Stoudemire, Carlos Boozer, Chris Bosh, Joe Johnson, LeBron James, etc. — only Wade has repeatedly stated his desire to continue playing for the Heat…provided they significantly improve his supporting cast (which seems highly likely).
In fact, Wade recently said: “I think anyone who knows me knows what my message has been. I love the city and I love my organization. We just have to work to get it done.”
Going into this offseason, I actually thought there was a very real possibility Wade might want to return to his home city and play alongside Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah. But his declarations toward the Heat and not-so-subtle swipes at the Bulls’ loyalty strongly indicate otherwise.
I’m a Wade fan. I think he’s one of the three or four best players in the league (to wit: he’s finished second only to LeBron James in Player Efficiency Rating the last two seasons). He’s won an NBA championship and earned a Finals MVP award. Wade is a certified superstar, and my secret hope has been to watch a Rose/Wade backcourt for the next five years.
However, the possibility of that seems more remote with each passing day. Based on how little buzz there’s been about Wade here in the Windy City, I’m guessing the Bulls’ front office folk realize that and are working all the other angles. That’s just speculation, of course. I don’t know. I’m not sure anybody knows.
Still…I wouldn’t suggest holding out any hope of seeing D-Wade in a Bulls jersey anytime soon.