Franchise Player: Dwyane Wade

In the past week, I have started to write a series about the criteria that players have to meet to be recognized as franchise players. If you want the list of requirements that I came up with, click here. Now that you know the rules, let’s go check out our featured player of the day.

Back in 2003, teams were all lining up hoping to get the #1 NBA draft pick in what was known as the LeBron James, Carmelo and Darko draft. As crazy as it sounds today, scouts had made NBA general managers as well as the general public believe that Darko Milicic was the next coming of Dirk Nowitzki; except with shot blocking skills and a better post game. He was going to revolutionize NBA basketball (I know this post is not about Darko, but please indulge me for a few lines, we should revisit the 2003 NBA Draft every year); or so we were told. Joe Dumars had a team that featured Chauncy Billups, Richard Hamilton, Tayshaun Prince and Ben Wallace (in his prime no less). Looking at the roster he had, Dumars passed on Carmelo Anothony, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh for Darko. Just so we’re clear, up to that point, only Dirk Nowitzki , Manu Ginobili and Peja Stojakovic had been able to transition their game from Europe to the NBA and become stars. Wade and Anthony in the meantime had shined on the biggest collegiate stage possible as they dominated the NCAA tournament and both made Final Four appearances. And here we are seven years later, Darko has played for Detroit, Orlando, Memphis, New York and Minnesota while Wade and Melo are still where they started. Milicic has said himself that once this season ends, he’s packing his bags and heading back to Europe (I really hope for him his career pans out there, because that would just give me more stuff to write about for my own entertainment). On the other hand, the Miami Heat selected a 6’4 guard out of Marquette with the number five pick in the draft. Miami knew they were getting a solid combo guard, but did they truly know what they were getting? To read the rest of this post, just click here. 

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