One day ago, Chris Paul congratulated Dwyane Wade after the latter drained a circus 3-pointer at the buzzer in Miami’s 126-125 victory over the Golden State Warriors.
A day later, the pair exchanged jerseys after Pauls’ Houston Rockets topped Wade’s Heat 121-118 Thursday night.
Wade scored less than half of his Wednesday total tonight, notching just 12 points on 15 shots. Paul filled the stat sheet with 14 points, 6 boards and 4 assists while facilitating James Harden’s 58-point outburst.
Paul and his son made waves before entering Toyota Center as they both sported Wade gear. His son, Chris Paull II, donned Miami’s black Miami Vice look with Wade’s signature No. 3 threads.
“One night you can do that, Paul told his son in front of Wade. At that point, Chris Paul II said “the only time I can wear this.”
Wade’s Farewell Tour Continues
This week may end up being the most memorable of Wade’s final NBA season.
After he beat the buzzer Wednesday night, he immediately thanked former Laker great Kobe Bryant, crediting “Mamba Mentality” for the game-winner.
“I wonder when Kobe hit that game-winner on me in L.A. when he hit it off the top,” Wade said after the game. “When he hit it off the glass at the top of the key, I asked ‘How is that possible?’ Thank you for showing me the way. Thank you for the Mamba Mentality.”
Wade referred to Bryant’s game-winner versus the Heat in 2009. With 3.2 seconds left and trailing by 2, Bryant put up a shot off one foot while floating to his left, sinking it to give the Lakers an improbable 108-107 win.
Bryant responded via social media, using the hashtag #lastdance.
He also naturally received praise from his wife, actress Gabrielle Union.
The couple married in late August 2014. Union, 46, is best known for her roles in “Bring It On,” “Bad Boys II” and “Cradle 2 the Grave.” Wade is 37.
The moment has already caused fans to generate a shirt and hoodie commemorating the shot. They possess the same color scheme as the Miami jersey from that night, with the front exhibiting the name “Father Prime.”
The moniker was launched 2 years ago on the night the Heat topped the New Orleans Pelicans 113-99.
Wade is appreciating every special moment over his final season, which will likely end before the postseason. The Heat are 27-34 and a game behind the No. 8 spot in the Eastern Conference.
“It was definitely one of my toughest game winners that I’ve hit,” Wade told reporters yesterday. “I remember many years ago when Kobe [Bryant] hit that game winner on me in LA at the top of the key off the glass, and I couldn’t understand how he could bank a three off the top of the key like that. Same thing. It doesn’t make sense, but this definitely is special, especially in my last year, to be able to have special moments.”
The Rockets improved to 37-25 and remain the No. 5 seed in the Western Conference.