MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Atop the new event space at Aventura Mall called LEVEL THREE was the man, the myth, the legend; Dwyane Wade.
The future Hall of Fame basketball player and South Florida icon chatted with CBS4’s Lisa Petrillo about all things “bigger than basketball.”
They started with his loyal fans, who embraced his highly promoted “One Last Dance” campaign when he returned to Miami for this final season.
“This community has embraced you like no other athlete. I mean they renamed the place Wade County!” said Petrillo.
“Yes, that was cool. I think when I came back I felt even more appreciation. I felt the fans missed me and I missed them. When I walked in I was so thankful at that moment for what myself and the organization has been able to accomplish over my career. It’s been special,” said Wade.
During Petrillo’s visit, Wade hosted his RunWade event; a charity fashion show featuring players and models strutting the runway wearing the latest looks.
Off the court, this 6-foot-4 superstar has scored many points for his fashion forward sense of style.
Petrillo showed him a few pictures from his younger years, when he was not quite as styled.
“You haven’t always been the most fashionable at all times,” she said laughing.
“That’s the way I’m sitting. That’s just the way I’m sitting,” Wade said, joking about his ill-fitting suit.
He did admit his passion for fashion didn’t come easy.
“I was so quiet and so shy when I was younger and even when I first got into the NBA. Fashion was expressive and I wasn’t expressive. Once I got a bit older and started understanding myself and traveling, I started changing my mentality and it started coming out,” he explained.
But style aside, it’s always been about philanthropy.
Giving back is something Wade has done as far back as he can remember.
“Just being young and understanding there was so many people who helped me and my family when we didn’t have food to eat or holidays to celebrate. People came in and helped us. So, I always knew it in my mind that one day if I’m able to be lucky, I’m going to be a person to give back and help other people,” he said.
“Family is obviously such huge part of your life. There’s obviously such a special partnership between you and [wife] Gabrielle [Union],” said Petrillo.
“We are definitely partners. We support each other. We’re friends and I think it was important for both of us on our second marriages, to find kind exactly what fits us,” he said.
It’s been all boys in the Wade family, until last November when Dwyane and Gabrielle welcomed baby girl Kaavia James to their family.
Petrillo asked him what he would like to teach her.
“The world is her oyster. I want her to understand that and feel that. I want her to be able to look at her mother and know that she can do anything. Her mother has proven that, so I got a cheat sheet already. Look at your mother and what she does and the way I support her. We want Kaavia to know the same thing,” he said.
So what does the future hold for D-Wade? The plan is not to plan.
“What’s next is I’m gonna take a big breath and sit back and think about everything. As a family we’re on both coasts in LA and Miami. My wife’s career is there so we will be on both coasts. I just want to take a deep breath and get away from it, let my hair grow some more and see what it is,” he said.
“Ok, let her earn the money for now,” joked Petrillo.
“Yes, I want to have a Sugar Mama,” he said laughing.
And it’s no surprise this legendary athlete is going out with style and grace.
“It will be heartfelt on all of us when you have that final day,” said Petrillo.
“Thank you, I appreciate it, and it will be an emotional day for me on that day, but we have a lot of great memories together,” he said.