Dwyane Wade managed to make team history even in the waning years of his career, as his 35-point explosion against the Toronto Raptors set a franchise record for a player coming off the bench.
Wade holds many of the team records throughout his 15-plus years in the league, but this one is a particular one that will signal the tail end of his career, giving him something to remember this last stretch in South Beach.
The 35 points were not enough to come back against the East-leading Toronto Raptors, as they managed to escape with a 125-115 win on Sunday night.
“We got down early in the third quarter by too many points to try to come back on the road versus the best team in the Eastern Conference,” Dwyane Wade said, according to Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
The Raptors outscored the Heat in each of the first three quarters, and Wade's furious vintage performance just wasn't enough to catch the pouncing Raptors.
“I was just trying to be aggressive,” Dwyane Wade said of his season-best 35-point performance. “I could tell we needed it a little bit from an offensive standpoint, especially with this team scoring the ball at a high rate early on and getting out in transition. So instead of letting the game go, I just decided to be a little aggressive. I had a couple matchups early where I could be aggressive and the ball kept finding me.”
Wade's previous season high was 21 points, but an array of vintage step-backs, pump fakes and ruthless drives to the basket turned back the clock against a team that could have easily smoked out the Heat without some of their best players.