Dwyane Wade reflects on loyalty after DeMar DeRozan-Raptors breakup
The NBA or any other professional sports organization is first and foremost a business. But no matter how many times that intangible piece of reality is recited, most people will always overlook it. The line between sports allegiance and business can be easily blurred, which is why feelings always get hurt whenever transactions like that of DeMar DeRozan’s trade to the San Antonio Spurs happen.
On Wednesday, the Toronto Raptors sent DeRozan, Jakob Poeltl, and a future pick to the Spurs in exchange for Kawhi Leonard and Danny Green. Leonard was always viewed as a commodity that’s bound to get traded. It’s a different case with DeRozan, who, until last season, was the face of the Raptors franchise and the longest-tenured Toronto player since Vince Carter took his talents to New Jersey. Additionally, he reportedly was assured by Toronto executives that he will not be traded, only for that promise to be broken shortly afterward.
Dwyane Wade has been around the NBA for so long to know that loyalty is nothing but a word, an idea that is always taken for granted but is never fully meant. Speaking to Tim Reynolds of the Associated Press, the three-time NBA champion, who last played for the Miami Heat, offered a piece of his mind about DeRozan’s trade and the bogus concept of loyalty in sports.
Wade feels for DeMar, saying this to the AP: “DeRozan gave everything to Toronto, everything they asked him to do from the standpoint of loyalty. That’s why I hate loyalty and sports, those two words, they shouldn’t go together. … From a player standpoint, it just sucks.”
Wade is still without a new contract, as he continues to mull whether to give it another go or hang up his sneakers for good.