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“I Secretly Still Want Kobe’s Autograph”: Berating the Media for Pitting Him Against His Idol, Dwyane Wade Detailed Tapping Into A “Sidekick Role”

Published 09/28/2023, 10:30 AM EDT

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Recently on the Club Shay Shay podcast with Shannon Sharpe, Miami Heat superstar Dwyane Wade opened up about a little-known part that played in his illustrious NBA career. In this enthralling discussion, Wade spoke about his time at the beginning of the league when the media was going tricksters, comparing him to the legend Kobe Bryant.

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This contentious comparison between the two basketball behemoths certainly accelerated Wade’s career, but it also revealed a profound respect, even love, that Wade had for his idol, Bryant.

Dwyane Wade’s Hidden Fanboy Moment Amidst Comparisons to Kobe Bryant


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It was in 2006 that Wade guided the Miami Heat to their first NBA title alongside the imposing Shaquille O’Neal. It was the time when the press made a hell of a war between Wade and Bryant, but in reality inside me all of us (reverence to) the Lakers we had.

When Shannon Sharpe questioned Wade about his thoughts on being compared to Kobe immediately and early on in his career, Wade, who took off on that trajectory and benefited from the comparisons said that he never sought out that well, in fact, he did have a hidden program, he really wished to have Bryant’s autograph.


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“I didnt want that smoke. Kobe had three rings by this time.I played the way I played because I watched Jordan, Iverson and Kobe. Don’t put me there yet. I’m two years in the league… I secretly still want Kobe’s autograph..

Wade’s candid admission revealed that while the media pushed the rivalry narrative, he cherished the opportunity to be mentioned alongside the basketball legend who had inspired his game.

Dwyane Wade’s Profound Reverence for Kobe Bryant

Dwyane Wade’s respect for Kobe Bryant was not a secret. In a statement in 2015, Wade stated Kobe had “monopolized the stage of basketball for nearly 20 years”. In assessing the basketball world of his time, Wade had no hesitation in putting Kobe and LeBron James on top.


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In an interview on Bleacher Report, he said the current era was devoid of Kobe Bryant-like players, and underscored how important it was to play against him and take advantage of every chance to face a real basketball monster.

During this exchange, it became evident that Wade held Kobe Bryant in the highest regard. Their mutual respect was palpable, with Kobe himself commending Wade when he learned of Wade’s heartfelt comments.


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Dwyane Wade’s journey in the NBA was not just about championships and accolades but also about the profound impact of an idol and the peculiar dance with media-driven rivalries, where his admiration for Kobe Bryant remained undiminished.

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Written by:

Abhinav Tomar


One take at a time

Abhinav Singh Tomar is an NBA author at EssentiallySports. He translates his love for the game into captivating coverage. A true hoop enthusiast and a fan of all sports, he brings the court to life with his insightful writing skills.
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Edited by:

Debmallya Chakraborty