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Yahoo Sports senior NBA writer Vincent Goodwill speaks with Miami Heat legend and Utah Jazz minority owner Dwyane Wade about the new chapter of Wade’s career in Utah and how he relates his experiences in Miami to his new role.
Dwyane Wade joined Yahoo Sports on behalf of Budweiser Zero. On May 24, Budweiser Zero will be dropping an NFT collection called BudverseLegends: Dwyane Wade x Budweiser Zero Edition. Available to consumers 21 years and older, the NFT collection features custom designed Wade visuals and inspirational quotes, membership utilities and a charitable integration. Together, Budweiser and Wade have teamed up to donate net profits from the sale of the NFTs to create a grant program for minority-owned businesses in underserved communities across the US. Consumers who are 21+ can each purchase NFTs directly through the website https://us.budweiser.com/nft/with the cryptocurrency ETH, Bitcoin or with a credit card, just like any other online purchase.
VINCENT GOODWILL: Welcome to Yahoo Sports, I'm Vincent Goodwill here with three-time NBA m soon to be Hall of Famer Dwyane Wade, now co-owner of the Utah Jazz. Dwyane's got some great stuff going on with Budweiser. I'm very curious, you're in Miami right now, how connected do you still feel to that franchise and those players even though your ownership stake is somewhere else?
DWYANE WADE: Yeah, well first of all, man, it's good to hear your voice and speak to you again. You know, I think the one thing is I have a tattoo, and one of my-- and my tattoo says "unique." I'm in a unique position. It's a little different than we've seen, being kind of still a part of the face of one organization and then being in ownership with another organization. I got an opportunity to sit and be a fan and be able to watch Bam and Jimmy and Vic-- my little brothers. I got a chance to see all of them wearing the same jersey that I wore. And the Utah Jazz is a part of my business. It's a part of something that I'm expanding into, something I'm learning even more. And so you've just got to know how to separate it.
VINCENT GOODWILL: When I think of the Miami Heat and this franchise's history, I think of Pat Riley and then I think of you. You were drafted there, you made a stop in Chicago, you had to stop in Cleveland, but you were Mr. 305. You had a rap verse in a Rick Ross song. You know what I mean?
There is no further place from Miami in mind's eye than Salt Lake City, Utah.
DWYANE WADE: Yeah.
VINCENT GOODWILL: But when you talk about that separation, what is-- like culturally, what is that like?
DWYANE WADE: Yeah, I mean, it's just like there's no further place than signing with Li-Ning 10 years ago and going to China. Michael Jordan is known for who again? The Chicago Bulls, right? He's an owner in Charlotte. So I understand that business and I understand relationships. And so my relationship with the Miami Heat continues to further and continues to get stronger and better. And I think the one thing everyone sees that I'm just a different type of player that's coming through. I don't follow suit or just everyone that's come before me. If it's something that is successful for you or something you're happy with, the people who love you should support it and love it for you.
And so that's what I found in Miami last night. I just found a lot of love and a lot of support, and it was good to get it.
VINCENT GOODWILL: Dwyane, you are entering the Budverse. You have a partnership with Budweiser Zero. You're going into NFTs. Tell us a little bit about that.
DWYANE WADE: Yeah, man. So I hired-- Vincent, I don't know if you remember at the end of my last season, Budweiser did a commercial that came out, actually, the day of my last game.
VINCENT GOODWILL: Yes, I remember that.
DWYANE WADE: It featured my mom and it featured a lot of individuals along the way. And from there, our relationship just continued to keep building. And I had an opportunity with them to jump into a space that was important for me in a whole different way than probably anybody knew because of my mom and my father's past when it comes to alcohol or addiction or abuse. And so to be able to create Bud Zero, what's fitting for Budweiser at the time, as it started becoming something, non-alcoholic brew started becoming a conversation, started becoming something that we started taking on here in America. And to be able to do it together, for me, it was very important. Like, my mom hasn't had a drink in so long, and I was able to present her a can of one of my first beers with Bud. And it was just super dope.
So just right now we just continue to further our relationship. So I just think it's super-cool that in our second year as a brand with Bud Zero-- we started in 2020-- and in our second year, we're jumping into a space that maybe in 10 years or 20 years or 30 years this brand continues to keep building, that people can say I was there for that. And so I'm just super-excited to be able to enter the Budverse with what Budweiser has already created.
VINCENT GOODWILL: You've always been a trendsetter, brother, so this is no different. Doing this, your career with Li-Ning, doing it with the Miami Heat, whatever it was, D, you always jump into it feet first and made it a labor of love. So appreciate you, man. And check out everything that you've got going with the Budverse and Bud Zero, doing a great job, man. Dwyane Wade, thanks again for joining us today.