Dwyane Wade Discusses Move To Utah, Donovan Mitchell With GQ

Jun 8, 2021, 5:50 PM | Updated: Oct 14, 2021, 4:29 pm
Utah Jazz owner Dwyane Wade and wife Gabrielle Union (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)...
Utah Jazz owner Dwyane Wade and wife Gabrielle Union (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Dwyane Wade discussed his recent purchase into the Utah Jazz ownership group, his relationship with majority owner Ryan Smith, Donovan Mitchell, and how his family felt about the move to Utah in a recent interview with GQ.

In the conversation, Wade was asked about why he chose Utah over an opportunity to own a piece of the Miami Heat where he played 15 of his 16 NBA seasons.

“My basketball career and my business career are two different things,” Wade told GQ. “We had a great relationship from a basketball standpoint. But for me, man, this was the best opportunity.”

Wade purchased a minority share in April after building a relationship with Smith whose purchase of the Jazz was announced in October.

“Ryan is 42 years old and I’m 39,” Wade said. “He’s in a business and space in tech that I want to one day get in and learn more about. And I know what I can bring to the table from a basketball standpoint and he sees my values. It just was the right fit.”

Smith and Wade met on a golf course in California years ago maintained a steady friendship both on the course and off.

When buying into the Jazz, Wade saw an opportunity to make Utah’s economic growth more accessible to the African-American community.

“We have, like, two percent African Americans in Utah, right?” Wade said. “So, there’s beauty in the city and hopefully more doors are opening and more of us can experience it. Hopefully, I can shed a different light on the city and this light on our community and we can start bridging the gap. And that’s all it is: a big gap. And it needs to be bridged.”

While Wade knew he wanted to buy a share of the team, he had to sell the idea to his family, including his wife, actress and model Gabrielle Union.

“My wife knew everything, and my kids knew everything, Zaya [One of Wade’s Children] knew everything,” Wade told GQ. “And everything that Ryan did, I talked to my family about these scholarships, about starting EnCircle. I talked to Zaya about that.”

Wade’s daughter Zaya is a member of the LGBTQ community, adding extra importance to Smith’s involvement in EnCircle, a safe space for LGBTQ youth and family founded in Provo, Utah.

Helping close the deal was Wade’s relationship with Jazz superstar Donovan Mitchell. The fouth-year guard has drawn comparisons to Wade throughout his career and the two have built a close bond off the floor.

“He’s already 24 years old and he’s got a lot more growth to do and he’s already a critical player in our league,” Wade said in the interviews. “So, I’m excited about giving back whatever I’ve learned to him so his career will be greater than mine ever was.”

You can read Wade’s full interview with GQ here, including his involvement in the world of real estate, and his venture into television host on TNT’s “The Cube.”

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Dwyane Wade Discusses Move To Utah, Donovan Mitchell With GQ