NBA icon Dwayne Wade isn’t necessarily known for his tattoos. It’s simply because he only got his first tattoo right before his final season in the NBA. As such, even when he wasn’t wearing his arm and leg sleeves yet, fans have not spotted any permanent ink on Wade’s body.
But over the last few years or so, the Miami Heat legend has been getting himself inked. It’s not at the pace of let’s say a Jordan Clarkson. He’s neither at the volume of JR Smith. So far, Wade only has three tattoos. Let’s take a look at them and uncover the meaning and significance behind each one.
Wade’s first tattoo is “Kaavia James,” the name of his daughter with actress Gabrielle Union. Wade shared the details of the tattoo on his Instagram several months after he got it. Based on his caption, Wade got the tattoo in China while on tour. It should be noted that it was the summer when he announced that he would re-sign with the Heat for his final season in the NBA.
Union herself shared a heartfelt to Wade and some behind the scenes details about the tattoo. She noted that “it took a lot of whiskey” and that they celebrated with then-teammate Udonis Haslem and Portland Trail Blazers guard C.J. McCollum.
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On this night we decided to embrace faith that our lil miracle @kaaviajames would make it into our arms. We held onto each other in joy and peace and allowed ourselves to look forward to her arrival. @dwyanewade marked this moment with his 1st ever tattoo of her 1st name Kaavia James… Yes it took alot of whiskey and he and @ud40 & @3jmccollum smoked a few cigars with the @lining.official @wayofwade family and we celebrated. For lots of people/families who have been on their own unique fertility/family creation journey, hope can feel like a cruel joke that plays on repeat. You stop letting yourself get excited and you dont dare utter any updates. You carry it all. It can feel isolating and depressing. You wonder if you are defective. You are not. You wonder if you are worthy. You are. You feel you feel you feeeeeel. You are not alone. You are loved and worthy and every feeling is real and understood. On this night, we allowed ourselves to stop holding our breath out of fear. We still had 4 months to go. We had never been this close. #tbt
“My belief is stronger than your doubt”
Wade’s third known tattoo is located on his thigh. On it is the quote “My belief is stronger than your doubt” as well as other names of places that are of significance to the three-time champion.
Marquette, of course, is where Wade played college ball. It was where he entered the national spotlight and made a name for himself as a top prospect. Wade County refers to Miami-Wade County — the county where the Heat is located.
To recall, in 2010, commissioners voted unanimously to rename the county Miami-Wade County in honor of Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade temporarily from July 1 to 7, 2010. It’s probably one of the biggest milestones in Wade’s impressive resume. Wade himself was probably humbled by this so much that he decided to permanently inscribe it on his thigh.
The final place tattooed on Wade’s thigh refers to his hometown in Chicago, Illinois. This is his hometown, the place where he was born and raised. And he’s sure proud of that.
59th and prairie and Robbins Illinois https://t.co/2wDeZwEjaI
— DWade (@DwyaneWade) November 15, 2016
“Way of Wade”
Finally, Wade’s third and final tattoo is his logo for the “Way of Wade” logo which appears on his gear through Chinese brand Li-Ning. It’s right on his knee, right below the previous tattoo on his thigh. While it’s unclear what the design means, it signifies his commitment to the Chinese brand after sealing a lifetime partnership.
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This thing that we call life is so precious and in a blink of an eye it can all change. So while i have the ability to smile, cry, laugh, pray and love I’m gonna do just that and I’m gonna do all these things with so much love, passion and intensity that at times it will hurt. I’m OK with that. That’s life. Thank you my god for these 37 years on earth and heres to more 🥂 😊 😢 😂 ❤️ 🙏🏾 ‼️#MyLifeMyway
Wade even joked noting that there’s no way he’ll change his logo because he already got it inked.