Dwyane Wade talks present, and now playing in back-to-back games
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Tuesday was about Dwyane Wade’s future.
He was very real about that, letting it be known that sustained mediocrity this season by the Bulls could factor into his decision to opt out of his contract and become a free agent this summer.
Wednesday was about the three-time NBA champion’s present.
The 35-year-old guard has missed a handful of games this season, mostly to rest up on the backend of back-to-backs, but made the decision prior to the Orlando game that enough was enough for now.
Wade not only started in Tuesday’s win over the Magic, but was back out there 24 hours later for the game with Atlanta.
That doesn’t mean Wade is done sitting out Day 2 on the back-to-backs this season, but he won’t have to worry about that until after the All-Star Break, when the Bulls host Phoenix on Feb. 24 and then go to Cleveland a day later.
It’s a good bet that the veteran won’t skip a chance to face off against good friend LeBron James, so go ahead and pencil him in for those two games, as well.
“That’s why I try to take off certain back-to-backs, etc., to try to prevent certain things if you can,’’ Wade said of his mindset. “Some things are unpreventable. So kind of the same plan I had last year.’’
It was in Miami last season that Wade started sitting in certain back-to-backs, and the result was playing in 74 games – the most regular-season action Wade had seen since the 2009-10 season. He was on pace to play in 73 games in his first season with the Bulls.
A lot has been made of the “Wade Plan,’’ but the veteran said that type of talk has been overblown.
“I didn’t have a plan not to play in back-to-backs,’’ Wade said. “I just decided to take a few of them off trying to be smart, like the organization wanted me to. This one [with Orlando and Atlanta], I felt I had two days off the other day after our back-to-back. I looked at the schedule for the month. We had four of them. The first two I decided was kind of closer. This one was more time in between. It’s challenging but I’m OK with the challenge of it.’’
Wade pointed out that his game against Sacramento on Saturday was the second game of a back-to-back, and all he did was put up 30 points.
Butler’s latest bromance
Jimmy Butler is no stranger to having good friends sitting courtside, whether it’s actor Mark Wahlberg or actress Shay Mitchell.
But the latest Butler bromance? Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown.
Brown was a courtside guest of Butler’s for Wednesday’s game with the Atlanta Hawks, and according to the Bulls guard, was going to hang in town for a few days.
The two became close in the summer, and the football that Butler carries around to practices and shootarounds was given to him by the Pro Bowl receiver.