Dwyane Wade: ‘This Is Jimmy Butler’s Team’

by July 30, 2016
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Introductory press conferences are full of hope and promise and Dwyane Wade‘s first official Bulls presser was no different.

Wade spoke extensively about his decision to join the Bulls, said there is no rift between him and Pat Riley, touched on Rajon Rondo, and said that Jimmy Butler helped persuade him to come to the Windy City.

This is Jimmy Butler’s team,” said Wade. “Myself and Rondo are here to bring what we bring as athletes to this team and to this city. He’s a young Bull on this team. He’s a 26-year-old that can play 40 minutes if coach wants him to and maybe more. I ain’t trying to do that.

“But this wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for Jimmy Butler,” Wade insisted. “Jimmy Butler called me and told me he wanted me here. That was huge.”

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“Let’s (also) clear up the notion that Pat Riley orchestrated me getting out of Miami because he didn’t offer me the money that I wanted,” added Wade. “I have no rift with Pat Riley. This year, the direction and the focus for that organization in Miami, which I have nothing but respect and love for, was a little different than it has been in years past. And with that being said, my direction and my focus was a little different than it’s been in years past. I communicated with them. This opportunity with Chicago, when I first set out to be a free agent, it wasn’t nothing that we all knew was going to happen, but it was things that happened along the way. I had a contract offer in Miami that I could have taken. It was my decision to be selfish and to live out a dream of mine. I brought a lot of excitement to Miami and it’s a home to me, it will always be. They wanted me back in Miami. I considered it, but at the end of the day I went where my heart wanted to be, and what it was telling me, and it was back home.

 

“I remember when Shaquille O’Neal came to Miami, coming from the Lakers, three championships,” noted Wade. “We had no championships at the time. I remember his press conference. I was playing in the Olympics, like Jimmy is right now. I remember Shaq said, ‘We’re not going to go through this all year. It’s Dwyane Wade’s team.’ So we’re not going to go through this all year. This is Jimmy Butler’s team. Myself and Rondo are here to bring what we bring as athletes to this team and to this city. He’s a young Bull on this team. He’s a 26-year-old that can play 40 minutes if coach wants him to and maybe more. I ain’t trying to do that. We’re going to depend on him a lot. This is a guy who I’ve known since Marquette University—great university, by the way—that I have a tremendous amount of respect for. Gar and John Paxson and everyone did an amazing job of making sure that this could happen.”

 

“But this wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for Jimmy Butler,” Wade insisted. “Jimmy Butler called me and told me he wanted me here. That was huge. At the time I didn’t know. Think about it, hometown kid Derrick Rose here and he finally leaves and (Joakim) Noah who is very known here leaves. It’s now Jimmy’s team. To want to bring in a guy like myself and Rondo shows what he’s about. He’s about winning. The individual stuff will come from that. I think Jimmy understands that. It won’t be a tug and pull about whose team it is. We’re all playing together. We all have one common goal. And that’s to win. Jimmy is going to be Jimmy Butler and I think he’ll grow because of what Rondo brings to the game and what I bring to the game.”