Dwyane Wade on the Modern NBA
Sep 19, 2014 ⇢ By: Ben Coen

Dwyane Wade on the Modern NBA


Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade is one of the NBA’s fashion ambassadors at a time when the league has never been more stylish. With the release of his new watch, Hublot’s “Classic Fusion Dwyane Wade,” Wade sat down with The Wall Street Journal to discuss his fashion sensibility, his recent wedding and the upcoming NBA season.

Your new Hublot watch costs $18,400. You also have socks with Stance that sell for $14. How do you think about price during the design process?

You want to do certain things at a certain level. Stance socks have a great quality. If it’s a high price point, it’s because you’re getting things you pay for. A Hublot watch is an unbelievable timepiece. My tie line with The Tie Bar has unbelievable quality. They’re great ties. But they have a low price point. That’s the way they do things.

You recently shared a photo of your Hublot watch with the hashtag “#newwatchalert.” Do you think NBA players are more aware of Hublot since Jay Z and Kanye West mentioned it in “Otis”?

Oh, yeah. No doubt. Hublot has really taken off the last couple of years. First of all, Hublot makes great pieces. Jay Z has a lot to do with that. Music influences a lot, and creative artists influence a lot. When he says “New watch alert / Hublot,” the sales went out the door. I came in the partnership at the right time.

What music do you listen to that people wouldn’t expect?

I don’t know what people would expect. If you follow me on Instagram, I think I’m pretty open with my followers, so I don’t know. I listen to all genres. I’m not close-minded at all. I have a relationship with certain artists in different genres—John Mayer is a good friend of mine.

When you were planning your wedding, did you have any pet peeves you tried to avoid?

No big centerpieces. I dislike having a centerpiece on the table because you can’t see that person across or next to you, and you can’t see what’s going on on the stage. That’s one of the first things I said. No centerpieces. I didn’t want any big flowers.

You mentioned some of the TV shows you watch: “Nashville,” “Scandal,” “Breaking Bad.” Do you relate to any of the characters?

I have my husband-and-wife shows, and then I have my own. When it comes to characters, I don’t know if I look at them and say they’re like me, or I identify with them. You just fall in love with certain characters. The people closest to me know them. I use a lot of aliases when I travel—so I use their names.

So which characters do you like?

Obviously, on “Scandal,” everyone loves Olivia Pope. I love the character Huck. If Huck’s not on the show, I want more Huck. On “Nashville,” I love Hayden [Panettiere]’s character, but I also love Deacon Claybourne.

You watched YouTube clips of Kobe Bryant on your honeymoon. There are lots of ways for you to get video clips of other players. But do you often watch on YouTube?

I do. Honestly, we can call the Miami Heat and say, “Can you put this together for me?” But sometimes, in my spare time, YouTube has certain clips and I might want to watch a certain game.

What numbers do you study?

I’m not really into all that. I look at my own scouting report, but I like to play the game and just react. I look and see that this guy loves to go left. But I want to play the game. I like to react toward the game. I do have in the back of my mind his strengths and weaknesses, but I don’t want to get too crazy and say, he only goes right 14% of the time. I don’t want to think that way.

After your playing career, if you’re in a front-office role, would that change?

I mean, yeah. You have to do what’s working or what people are doing. But because I played the game, a lot of it is going off of what I know of their talent just by watching. My whole life, I’ve had to break down film and watch players. It’s never really been about numbers for me. I’ve always had a good eye for watching players and seeing what they’re good at and what they’re not good at.

You just signed a two-year deal with the Heat. Was the length of the contract influenced by the NBA’s new cable deal in two years?

The new TV deal is very exciting, especially for the players. For me, I have an unbelievable organization and relationship with the organization. I think I’ve proven that, as much as we work hard and everyone wants to get paid for the way they work in life, it hasn’t been about the exact dollar amount. I’m doing what I can to put my team in the best position and myself in the best position.

How many games do you expect to play this year?

As many as god will let me. You always want to be on the court. This year, without LeBron, we don’t have the luxury we’ve had the last few years. But you can’t control that. I’ll hope for the best, knock on wood that everything will go great, and I’ll play as many games as I can.

This interview has been condensed and edited.