Udonis Haslem knows his career is coming to a close, and he’s working hard to set up the rest of his life after the NBA.
The Miami Heat veteran has invested heavily in his hometown of Miami, telling The Undefeated he’s got plenty going on once he retires from NBA play. The three-time NBA champion is a majority owner in five Subways, a pair of Auntie Anne’s Pretzel franchises, and just helped open a 24-hour Starbucks in Miami’s Jackson Memorial Hospital, to name a few of his investments.
Haslem said he sees his investments as a way to contribute to the Miami community in a more lasting way than he did earlier in his career.
“I have an opportunity to provide some new jobs to people in my city of Miami,” Haslem recently told The Undefeated. “It’s crazy. I just hired one lady that went to school with my dad. That felt good. I hired my best friend’s sister and he is also my driver now.
“So I’m employing and empowering people around me. I’m putting them in situations where they can grow. It’s different than giving somebody a handout. When I first got in the league, I was like, ‘You need some help? Take a dollar.’ But when you do that you put a cap on people. They aren’t able to grow and there is a ceiling. With this opportunity, if they are willing to work hard as my business grows, they can grow.”
There’s a lot of great stuff in there about Haslem, including his own mentorship by an area businesswoman and juggling his role as NBA player and businessman. Though he’ll turn 37 later this year, Haslem is beloved by Miami fans and players and told The Undefeated he expects to play another season. His contract with the Heat expires after this year, but unlike Dwyane Wade he hopes to stick around and finish out his career in Miami.
“My body still feels good,” Haslem said. “I plan on being around at least another year after this year.”