In his 16th and final season in the NBA, Dwyane Wade’s “one last dance” tour has at times felt more like a referendum on his ability to still play the game at a high level than a farewell tour. Wade is averaging 14.3 points in 25.6 minutes off the bench for a Miami Heat team currently clinging to the 8th and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. He’s had a multitude of Wade-esque moments — his insane game-winner against the Golden State Warriors in February comes to mind — and has played in 63 of the Heat’s 73 games so far this season.
Wade maintains this is definitely his last season in the NBA, despite telling The Athletic that this is the healthiest he’s felt “in a while.” But could he keep going if he really wanted to? Wade believes he could certainly keeping playing into his 40s.
“I know I can play a solid two more years, especially in this role that I’m in now,” Wade told The Athletic. “I can play another two, three years, definitely.
“People around me want me to keep playing. But I made the decision to say this was my last season and I wanted to walk away the way I’m walking away now and have no regrets about it.”
Wade also revealed that he was close to calling it quits ahead of the 2105-2016 season, when he was dealing with excruciating pain in his knees. But a change to his diet, and a change to the people he was training with, allowed Wade to keep going and, even now, feel great in his final season.
Should the Heat hold on to the 8th seed, they’ll have a date with the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs, a series they will likely lose. But seeing a 37-year-old Wade doing his thing in the playoffs one final time would be a heck of a sendoff.