Dwyane Wade chats with The Scores Report

Dwyane Wade is in Chicago right now for the 3rd annual “Wade’s World” charity weekend. The festivities include a benefit dinner, a kick-off party, school visits, a bowling party, a youth summit and a school supply giveaway. But the event that D.Wade really wanted to promote was the Gatorade “Chicago Has Talent” show on Saturday night at the Harris Theater at Millenium Park. (For tickets or information call 312-334-7777 or visit www.harristheaterchicago.org. All proceeds go towards the Wade’s World Foundation.) Go to the foundation’s website for more information about the weekend’s festivities and events.

D.Wade took a few minutes out of his busy schedule to chat with The Scores Report about the weekend, what it was like to win an Olympic gold medal and where he might sign next summer.

TSR: D. Wade. How are you doing?

DW: I’m good, boss. I’m good.

TSR: It’s a pleasure to talk to one of the best – if not the best – basketball players on the planet.

DW: Aw, well, I appreciate that.

TSR: I saw your itinerary for this “Wade’s World” Weekend and it looks like you are about to present a check to the William Leonard Public Library. What does it mean for you to be able to give back to your hometown?

DW: It means a lot. Whether it’s a big contribution or a small contribution to be able to give back to not only my hometown and my community, but to others as well. I’ve been very blessed and I think it’s my job to continue to help others that are in dire need, like the William Leonard Public Library in Robbins.

TSR: There’s a jam-packed weekend of activities. One thing I wanted to ask you about was the Gatorade “Chicago Has Talent” show on Saturday. Can you tell me a little bit about that?

DW: Yeah, you look at the whole weekend and we’ve got many different events going on. Some of them you’re going to have fun and some of them are fundraisers, but I think the biggest thing is the one that Gatorade really got behind was the “Chicago Has Talent” because it’s showcasing our kids and giving them an opportunity in life. I think we’re going to have between 10-15 different groups of kids perform in front of a crowd of around 1,000 people, and get a chance to showcase their talent. And the top 3 will get an opportunity to do some special things, but the winner is going to go on and do some great things and get an opportunity to be seen. I think our job is to give them that chance and that hope that they can do it. So I’m looking forward to it. I can’t wait until that Saturday event. That’s probably the biggest event to me of the week of all the things we’re doing.

TSR: That’s at the Harris Theater at 7:00 PM at Millenium Park and tickets (which start at $15) are available.

DW: Yeah, that’s at the Harris Theater and it’s just after we get done with a youth summit where we have a panel full of celebrities and powerful, important people in the community, and they get to talk to kids for a couple of hours about violence and sex, and about so many different topics, and that’s actually right before the show.

TSR: And that’s at the UIC Forum at 725 W. Roosevelt Road.

DW: Yeah.

TSR: So do you mind if I ask you a couple of basketball-related questions?

DW: Sure.

TSR: Were you a Bulls fan growing up?

DW: Oh, no question. Bulls fan. Jordan fan. The whole nine.

TSR: The Bulls have positioned themselves to make a run at a big-name free agent next summer, and you have made it clear that you are keeping your options open heading into 2010. Even though the Heat are over the cap, they tried to acquire Lamar Odom, but missed out. Do you think that they’ve done enough to build a team around you or are you looking for the franchise to make a big in-season trade this year?

DW: Well, we want to continue to add pieces. I think we have some pieces now. Over this year and even next year, I think they have the opportunity to add some more pieces so we can get back to being a championship-caliber team. I’m confident in my team that they’re going to do that, but right now I’m just leaving my options option. A player needs some opportunity to have some flexibility with this decision. I just want to make sure that I’m making the right decision for the long haul for me, and I’m going to take my time doing it. I’m going to focus on the basketball side of things now, and then worry about everything else later.


on where he’ll sign next summer…

“A player needs some opportunity to have some flexibility with this decision. I just want to make sure that I’m making the right decision for the long haul for me, and I’m going take my time doing it.”


TSR: You’ve won both an NBA championship and a gold medal in the Olympics. Can you compare the two experiences?

DW: They’re both unbelievable. If I never played another basketball game, I could be satisfied about some of the things I’ve done and places I’ve been. And to win a world championship in the NBA was a dream come true. And to win a gold medal was beyond my wildest dreams. To do it the way we did it with the caliber of people on that team, and the greatness on that team, was just phenomenal. I feel blessed to be a part of both.

TSR: I grew up outside of Milwaukee, so it was cool to see you take Marquette to the Final Four. When you were a junior in college did you have a feeling that you were going to become an All-NBA talent or did you have more modest expectations?

DW: (laughs) I didn’t know. I knew I had a strong work ethic and would get the most that I could out of my talent and my ability as possible, and whatever comes out of that comes. You always dream and hope that you could be an All-Star and win championships, but you never know until you’ve been put in that position. I’ve been very blessed in my six- going on seven-year career in the NBA already.

TSR: Is there an area of your game that you’d like to improve this season?

DW: I’m the kind of player that likes to fine-tune all parts of my game. But I’m going to continue to work on my range, and on my back-to-the-basket game as I get older so I don’t have to move around as much. And to continue to become a better leader. I think that’s the biggest thing and I think it would take me and my team to another level.

TSR: All right, that’s all I have for you. Thanks for speaking with us and I wish you the best of luck with the weekend and I hope everyone gets out to the Gatorade “Chicago Has Talent” show. Good luck with everything.

DW: Thank you, boss. I appreciate it.

Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom.

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