This Day In HEAT History: Dwyane Wade’s Career Game Against The Knicks
Photo Credit: Issac Baldizon
Let’s go back to a time when Dwyane Wade was flat out dominating the league with relative ease.
We’re not talking about his breakout season in 2004-05, his first title in 2006 or any of the Big 3 years.
Figure it out yet?
We’re talking about his MV3 campaign in 2008-09.
If you need a little refresher on what he did that season, let’s go down the list:
- Averaged 30.2 points (a league-high), 7.5 assists, 5.0 rebounds, 2.2 steals and 1.3 blocks per game on 49.1 percent shooting
- Scored 30 points or more 39 times, including 13 instances where he hit at least 40 and three occurrences where he racked up at least 50 (one of which we’ll get into shortly)
- Became the first (and still the only) player to record at least 2000 points, 500 assists, 100 steals and 100 blocks in a single season
As a result, Miami went from 15-67 in an injury-plagued 2007-08 season to 43-39 (the greatest single-season improvement in franchise history). Of course, Erik Spoelstra deserves some credit for that as well.
And on April 12, 2009, with the HEAT needing a win to stay in the No. 5 seed, Wade had his best statistical game as a pro with a career-high 55 points on 19-of-30 shooting from the field, including 6-of-12 from deep (also a career-high in three-point makes), and 11-of-13 from the line, nine rebounds, four assists and one block in a 122-105 victory.
Naturally, Wade set the tone with 16 points in the first quarter before he absolutely went off for 23 points in the third thanks to five treys (yes, five) to finally gain some separation from the Knicks.
That said, most of his buckets came off aggressive takes to the basket, like this play that sealed his career mark of 55:
“It was about getting this win [and] trying to continue to keep destiny in our hands right now in this playoff race,” Wade said after the game.
Coach Spo added:
“He understood the magnitude. The thing about Dwyane [is] whenever you’re talking to the team or talking about perspective or where we are or what we need to do, Dwyane is one of those guys that gets it. He gets it. When you’re talking about an importance of a win or an importance of where we are in the standings, he understands all of that.”
And that’s why Wade is one of the best to ever do it.