Dwyane Wade received the March NBA Cares Community Assist Award in recognition of his support for Marjory Stoneman Douglas High’s students in the wake of the mass shooting at the school on Feb. 14.
The award recognizes an NBA player each month who best reflects the passion that the league and its players share for giving back to their communities.
“It’s an honor,” Wade said. “You have so many guys around this league that do so many amazing things in their communities. Obviously no one does it to be awarded a Community Assist award, but it’s great when the NBA takes notice of individuals doing great things and great deeds and awarding them for it. I just came back in a time of need for this community and was able to put some fingerprints on what was going on so I’m honored and thankful to be honored for that.”
Wade made a surprise visit to Douglas in March to meet with students and discuss ways to magnify their message calling for action and change.
Wade and his wife, Gabrielle Union, donated $200,000 to the “March for Our Lives” created by Douglas students that centered in Washington, D.C., on March 24 and sparked several more rallies across the country.
Wade also sponsored the “Parkland 17” art exhibit at the Wynwood Art Walk, which was created to honor the 17 people who were killed in the shooting.
Wade also has reached out to families who lost loved ones in the shooting, including the family of Joaquin Oliver, inviting them to the Heat’s March 3 home game and presenting them with custom shoes and a game-worn jersey.
Wade will be presented the award prior to the Heat’s home game Monday night against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The award is presented by Kaiser Permanente, which will donate $10,000 to the Dwyane Wade Family Foundation.
Wade and Union will also be featured in a HGTV special called “All-Star Flip,” to air on the network Thursday at 9:30 p.m. in which the couple will showcase their love of home renovation as they buy, overhaul and flip a fixer upper in an up-and-coming Miami neighborhood.
“Ever since we renovated our house a few years ago, I’ve been a little real-estate obsessed,” Union said in a press release about the show. “It took a while, but I finally convinced Dwyane that we should try flipping a house.”
Wade added in the press release: “And we’re doing it to raise money for charity, so how could I say no?”
During the special, Wade and Union will join forces with their construction team to gut an outdated ranch house and add square footage and value to the property with a grand second-story master suite. They will transform the home into a sleek, modern showplace, and, in the end, the proceeds of the sale will go to a charity of the couple’s choice.
CLOSER TO HISTORY
Wayne Ellington entered Monday’s game needing eight more three-pointers to break the Miami Heat’s franchise mark for most in a season (225) set during the 2004-05 campaign by guard Damon Jones.
Ellington, who ranks second all time in the category, would need to surpass his average of 2.9 threes made per game to reach the mark.
“Obviously, there’s been some talk about it,” Ellington said. “I’ll put my best foot forward and see what I can do.
“To be a leader in any statistical category for this franchise is a huge thing. Obviously, there’s a lot of great players that have come through here and championship teams. If you can be at the top of a list for anything that’s going on here with this Heat organization, it’s a major accomplishment.”
Ellington surpassed the NBA record previously held by Eric Gordon (207) for most threes made by a reserve.
“It’s funny, I didn’t even know about that or anything until after the game,” Ellington said. “I got back to my locker and I looked at my phone, I had a lot of text messages and stuff like that. But man, it’s just a testament to a great season so far. Obviously, my teammates and coaches have been unbelievable to me and I always like to thank those guys. But it’s been a heck of a regular season and it’s been a lot of fun.”
Spoelstra said that while Dion Waiters’ rehab remains on schedule, it’s too soon to tell whether he will be ready for the start of training camp in September.
Waiters, 26, underwent season-ending surgery on his left ankle on Jan. 22 and to repair a preexisting navicular bone fracture.
“He’s out of the cast,” Spoelstra said. “He’s out of the boot. So he’s doing some light bike riding right now. And he’s been around a lot more so that always helps. It helps your mindset.”