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>>Male presenter: Thank you, welcome to Google in New York.
[applause and cheering]
Please welcome Dwyane Wade.
[applause and cheering]
>>Dwyane Wade: How ya doin'?
>>presenter: Have a seat, yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: How y'all doin'? How y'all doin'?
>>voices in audience: Good, good.
>>presenter: And welcome to Google.
>>Dwyane Wade: Thank you.
>>presenter: You've never been here before, right?
>>Dwyane Wade: No, I've never been here before only been on the website.
>>presenter: Cool, cool.
Now we're really, we're really excited to have you here today. There's a lotta big fans.
I myself I grew up on South Florida so I was like an original Heat fan, like Rony Seikaly,
Glen Rice, all that stuff.
>>Dwyane Wade: How many people here are from Miami?
>>people in audience: Yeah, yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: Alright represented, we've got a few.
>>presenter: But so I read, you have a new book out this week and this is part of the
[email protected] series and the memoir is called A Father First and I thought we could talk
a little about that today and your experience and some of the stuff you discuss in that
And I think, like many people in this room, I and a lot of us knew you as the NBA final,
the two time NBA champion, the NBA Finals MVP, and the guy who took Marquette the Final
Four and all that, but I think --
>>Dwyane Wade: I'm still that person.
>>presenter: Yeah.
I think that story which you definitely tell in the book is sort of almost secondary to
this other sort of set of tales about you. This kid who grew up in a tough life in a
rough part of Chicago and who learned to be, learned he was going to be a father at 19
and I think that, that, do you feel like that's true that, that part of that story, the story
of the guy who had to learn how to make all these tough decisions very early and learn
how to be a father and all that is the primary story of the book?
>>Dwyane Wade: Well, yeah, I think it would have been easy for me to write a book about
basketball but I also think y'all can Google it. [chuckles]
>>presenter: Nice, nice.
>>Dwyane Wade: That was so corny.
I didn't even think about that one it just came to me.
But no, I felt that if I was gonna go down this path I wanted to write something that
I felt was meaningful and I felt that can help others in a sense. So I talked a lot
about my childhood, I talked a lot about my upbringin'.
And I do a lot of foundation work so I know kind of the same struggle that's goin' on
in the inner city, kinda the same way I grew up. So I see kids everyday that's just like
I was and goin' through some of the same issues that I went through. So I took this opportunity
to kind of express that and talk about it because when kids see me and I come and talk
to them they see Dwyane Wade, the two time NBA champion and all these accolades, but
I don't think they necessarily understand that I was them and I remember being in that
same seat and I remember bein' told that I wasn't gonna be successful and I couldn't
do this and I couldn't do that.
So I thought I would take this time in this book and kinda share those personal experiences
through my life. And also the title of the book is A Father First and it's not necessarily
directed to just fathers, I wanted to really express to families that's gonna through the
same issues that I went through whether it's a divorce, or whether it's the battle between
the custody from the kids, and kinda just share my experiences the negative and a positive
of it and hopefully it can help someone look at things in a different way or it can help
them in some facets of their life so hopefully I accomplished that. Oh a little basketball's
in there, too.
>>presenter: Yeah, yeah, definitely.
So why did you decide, I mean the book opens with you getting full custody of Zion and
Zaire --
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: and so why did you decide that you wanted to get this out there?
>>Dwyane Wade: It just, I really don't know. I've never really thought that I was gonna
write a book, I never thought I'd be an author before I always looked at it as hard work,
which it is --
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: but I just felt that I go through everything in life for a reason. It's some
reason I went through this process for many, many years and still going through it today.
And I just know that a lotta guys especially in my league, in the NBA, that come up to
me had a lotta questions, gave 'em hope in a sense.
Before I got custody, I got appointed to the Fatherhood Initiative from our President himself
and to be seen in that field as bein' someone who can speak for fathers in a sense I just
thought it was my duty and my job and obligation to kind of share those experiences with others
hopefully, like I said hopefully it can help them, hopefully it can give them a different
perspective --
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: on how to handle somethin' because when I was goin' through this custody
battle, it was kinda like shootin' in the dark. You didn't know what was gonna happen
and where the ball's gonna end up. So hopefully if anybody's gonna through the process they
can kinda see, "Well, you know what this is how D. Wade said he dealt with it, this is
what he went through," and they can see this is how hard it's supposed to be, this is as
hard as it's gonna be, just so many different things so.
>>presenter: Yeah. You describe yourself as an introverted guy in the book but there are
some very personal things that you share in there. Were there parts of it that were difficult
for you to sort of explain or put out there and share with the world?
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, I mean anytime you're talkin' about your personal life in a sense
is always difficult. I've had to live my life under the microscope in a sense and it's very
public so a lot of things I didn't want to get out got out and I would love to deal with
a lot of things behind closed doors but it's not the hand I was dealt. But I kept a lot
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: I like to tell people that what you read in here is a little mild version
of my life -- [chuckles]
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: especially the divorce and the custody battle --
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: it was hectic but, and at the same time it was public so --
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: you can go find out that kind of information. I didn't wanna really get
too much into it in the book.
>>presenter: I mean there's also some very emotional stuff from when you were a kid growin'
up and some of the experiences with your family and the relationships that you had with them.
Do you think it was easier telling some of the stories especially about your mom and
stuff because it was also sort of a lessons learned tale that you were telling?
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, not easy but the lesson learned tale made me really feel comfortable
tellin' it, but it's still not easy today. We was on The View the other day, my mom and
my sister came, and we had a segment and my mom was talkin', I put my head down in there
'cause I almost lost it, I almost went in tears. And it's kinda sometimes like I'm lookin'
at someone else's life when I hear about it or when I think about it it's kind of like
that's not my life, that wasn't me. But it was me. So some of those emotions, some of
those memories come back in a sense so writin' this book was like my therapy, it was kind
of therapeutic --
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: in a sense. So it's like bein' in a dark room and talkin' to my writer about
my life. And I remember so much, like it started coming back and I remember things like it
was yesterday as well so it was very, very therapeutic.
>>presenter: Yeah. The subtitle of the book is How My Life Became Bigger Than Basketball
and that came from something that your mother used to say to you.
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, she's always, she know I loved basketball, she know I wanted to be
a basketball player but she didn't want that to be my only dream. But she always told me,
"Son, you life," she still tell me this day, "Your life is bigger than basketball, your
life is bigger than basketball." I never understood it then 'cause when you're a kid you're like,
"No, I'm gonna play basketball." And that's --
that's what I would do. But I lied I was like, "Yeah, mom I wanna be a doctor --
is that good?" But I didn't wanna be a doctor.
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: [chuckles]
>>presenter: One of the things you talk about in there is with your two sons and your nephew
is man time and man talks right –
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: where you have like these serious conversations about important things with
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: And how important is that in your relationship with them?
>>Dwyane Wade: Well it's very important to give them their time together and apart. Like
I said I had to learn this stuff too, takin' parenting classes, my kids are in therapy
as well, going and sit down with them in therapy sessions and tryin' to learn about them not
thinkin' that just because I was a kid once and now I'm an adult, I have all the answers.
So I understand that man time for them is very important because they want it every
day. "Like I gotta go to a game. You all want man time now?" So they want it all the time
but it's good that they like to hang with me that way and it's not always just fun sometimes
we sit across from each other, and one day it was rainin' so it was like okay we couldn't
go out so I put like a table in my room with chairs all around it, had everybody name on
the chair, had questions for everybody written down on note cards that we asked each other.
And I was sittin' there and it was like real life questions and I want them to know they
can, I'm an open book they can come to me about anything and I want them to feel comfortable
about comin' to me about stuff but I also ask them questions, the tough questions and
I wanna be able to answer it for 'em. So that's one thing that consists of man time, it consists
of obviously doin' fun things.
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: My kids are they're simple in a sense like my youngest son if I put him
in the car on the expressway and drop the top and we rollin', he great, that's amazing.
He like, "Faster, faster."
I'm like, "I don't wanna get pulled over but," --
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: but, so I got to drop the top to make it seem like we goin' real fast and
he's like lovin' it. So it's like certain things is just to me when we spend time together
and no one else is involved in that moment.
>>presenter: Yeah. Are there things that you feel like you haven't been ready to explain
to them yet that they've kind of come to you with the man talks?
>>Dwyane Wade: Not really, I mean, like I said I'm pretty honest with 'em. I think it's
things that they not ready to ask me yet.
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: Most anything I don't think they still tryin' to make sure they get as
comfortable as possible to be able to open up in a sense. They still a little guarded
on certain things. It's tough for them, they goin' through things that I've never been
through so I tell my oldest son, "You know what I don't know what you goin' through.
I've never been the son of a quote unquote celebrity basketball player and all the stuff
that he go through. If I have a bad game he gonna hear about it in school. The kids gonna
talk about his dad. So I don't know how to --
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: When I grew up everybody Dad sucked, it was --
it was [chuckles]
it was the way of the world. [chuckles]
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: and so it's a lot different [chuckles]
different now. But so it's tough, it's tough man, he deals with a lot of emotions that
I've never had to deal with and that I don't really understand and I'm tryin' to teach
him how to handle things in a certain way, so.
>>presenter: Do you ever worry about that they'll have a strange perspective on the
world that's, because, I mean their life is so different than yours was when you were
that age and there is a difference between being the son of a famous person. Do you ever
worry about that perspective?
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, I worry about it a lot. Everybody so much when you're young and you
get older you start thinkin' about your family, you wanna give your family everything you
didn't have and so I worry about givin' 'em too much, they might not have the work ethic
that they need to be successful. I mean, they not gonna live off my money 'cause I'm gonna
retire and live off my money --
so I think about all these things. It's not necessary, it's not easy and everyone in the
world thinks that, "Well, I know it might not be easy but just give me that money and
I'll make it work." That big and small, more money, more problem stuff --
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: that, it makes it a little harder. I think my parents, I think it was
very simple to be my parents. We don't have anything so you don't get anything.
Sounds simple enough to me.
[chuckles] And I understood that. But it's tough but, like I said, I'm still learnin'
and only thing I can hope is that I always say I'm raisin' future leaders. My son is
10, my oldest son is 10, Zaire, Zion is 5, and my nephew Dahveon who lives with us as
well he's turnin' 11 next week, so I'm raisin' these future leaders of the world and I gotta
try to do my best job that I can to hopefully raise 'em to be better men than me.
>>presenter: Yeah. And Zaire likes to play basketball, right?
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, it's just sickening.
>>presenter: So you said in the book that you made this deal with him when he was nine
that he could play but he had to play for fun only --
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: like he had to play because he wanted to be having fun.
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah,.
>>presenter: Do you think that that's going, I mean in the book you talk about how you
like to play for fun but there are times when you're not, you're clearly not playing just
for the fun of it --
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: you're fiercely competitive.
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: Do you feel like you worry about that with him, like do you feel like that's
goin' well?
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, I got double, it's like I got double standards.
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: I'm tellin' him just to play for fun and like leave the refs alone and
don't have an attitude out there and I know he's like, "Dad, I watch you play --
and like what are you talkin' about?"
So, but I do this, I told him I don't want no pressure, I don't want him to put pressure
on himself because it comes with bein' my son. So automatically everyone he plays basketball
with is, on one hand, they're gonna come after him. On the second hand, they expect him to
be this amazing player.
But if he wants to play this sport I want him to play it because he enjoy playin' it,
he havin' fun. I mean, he's in fifth grade now, I mean, you're not workin', you're not
makin' no money off this --
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: so why stress yourself.
>>presenter: [laughs]
So I mean I'm payin' all the bills I ain't get no help.
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: So I just try to tell him that. He had an episode one time where he, and this
was the moment where I became that dad. I always thought I was gonna be the cool dad
and sit in the crowd with my head low and sit in the back. And then this moment I became
that father 'cause he was out there, man, and everything he was havin' an emotion day.
It was a girl that he likes, she was a cheerleader at the game, so first game cheerleadin' so
he was, he didn't know how to act.
[chuckles] His little brother, Zion, had kicked him the groin so his groin was hurtin' from
the night before --
my dad, everybody was at the game, my dad, the whole family was there so that's another
emotion. So he out there, every time a call is called he runnin' to the ref. The coach
say somethin' to him he talkin' back and he's just not playin' so I stand up in the middle
of the game: "Zaire!" I never thought I'd be that dad.
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: I calmed myself but then I went to talk to him at half time, "Hey, you
wanna got get in the car? You wanna go? 'Cause you not doin' what we say you're gonna do.
Second half he came out he was back to his dancin' ways and --
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: and playin' --
doin' all those things.
>>presenter: When --
>>Dwyane Wade: [chuckles]
>>presenter: when you were in school you talk about your sister used to push you academically
and I know that Coach Crean pushed you to finish strong in school even though you left
early. But do you ever talk to your kids about how you didn't finish, how you decided to
go pro early? And what is your perspective on the whole going pro early I mean is it
purely an economic decision or?
>>Dwyane Wade: I haven't, I haven't really gotten to that conversation with them yet
about me leavin' early. For me, the decision, I think everyone has a different reason why.
Some people are just, they're so good, they're so ready. It's time for them to go to the
next level.
For me, I felt that I was ready to go but, and then, I talk about this a lot. Financially,
I was strugglin'. At the time I married, I was 20, 21, 20 years old, married with a child
that ate a lot and --
needed a lot --
and I was makin' $220 a month. It was rough. And so it came to the point where I was like,
"I love college basketball, I would love to get my degree right now, but I have to do
what's best for my family and these stomach rumblins', it's not workin'." So I had to
take my, I had to go to the next level and take a chance. So everyone has their own journey
and their own path to the reasons why they have to do that.
>>presenter: Um-hum. Professional athletes have this, have a pretty bad stigma when it
comes to being fathers and fatherhood and you talk about, that's one of the things you
mention in there. Do you think that that portrayal is fair broadly?
>>Dwyane Wade: I think, I think it's fair in a sense the one's that they focus on. I
think just as much negative, just as much as we focus on negative just as much positive.
So I don't think it's just professional athletes. I mean, my dad was a professional athlete
and he wasn't around for the first eight or nine years of my life then he eventually became
a part of it.
So a lot of fathers out here, it's no secret about it, that for whatever reason they have
left not even the home but they left their responsibilities. But professional athletes
anything we do is gonna get a little bit more and rightfully so.
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: So I think it's a lot of great fathers as well and I think that's one of
the reasons that I wrote this book as well to kind of shed light on those positive fathers
out there. Goin' through this process I get it, I get situations why certain dads are
not in the house, let me just say that now. It wasn't me, I wasn't gonna stop fightin'
but it's not easy from a situation that I dealt with where really tryin' to push me
out and really tryin' to make it impossible for me to become a father to my kids. So I
understand certain fathers to move on, but I don't accept it, I'm not sayin' that's what
you should do, but I get it.
>>presenter: Um-hum. There's a funny anecdote in there about your kids are out playin' basketball
and they're callin' each other Lebron, right?
And you were kind of like --
>>Dwyane Wade: It's crazy. No matter what you do --
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: no matter what you do somebody [chuckles] yeah, they, I mean they like me
they --
I'm one of their top players --
but it's, they got they favorite players --
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: and everyone does. [chuckles]
>>presenter: But do they like know, is the team a part of your life with the kids.
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, yeah, they yeah. All of our, we have a family atmosphere in Miami
so all of our kids are friends of each other's and they play. Like, if anybody ever really
like focused, if they did a reality show a day on the kids of the Miami Heat players,
they would see that they only watch the first half of the game, they never around for the
second half of the game because they be upstairs on the basketball court playing they own game.
Me and my kids have to make a deal like, "You gotta watch at least two quarters."
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: So they are very close, they are very close to everyone on the team. Kids
love guys that can fly and can do amazing things in the air. So Lebron James is that
guy that does all those amazing things, so he's a favorite. But now he's gettin' pushed
over a little bit 'cause KD is now become the favorite in my house. So we got to the
finals and I'm like, "So who you rooting for?"
>>Dwyane Wade: [chuckles] They's like, "Dad it's gonna be tough."
It's crazy.
>>presenter: Because you guys are, you say in there that you guys are pretty close right
now on the team, there's a family atmosphere, like you said, down there, do you feel like
this championship was any different from the last one?
>>Dwyane Wade: It is different, obviously it's a different --
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: total different team --
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: from the standpoint of what we've dealt with. When Shaq came to Miami,
it was a love fest –
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: everybody loves Shaq and the Miami Heat and that team and we was able to
win the championship. That was my third year in the league and I was like still young and
just excited and felt on top of the world and untouchable and then reality set in. [chuckles]
And then, now winnin' this one. It took me six years from then to win another championship
and I've just been through so much in my own personal life.
And a lot of guys on the team, besides me and Udonis who won in '06, no one else has
won a championship that we had on our team so we had a lot of guys that really was humbled
by this game.
And so this one meant a lot more for me because of everything I've been through. When you
go through, I had three surgeries in between the time where I had shoulder surgery that
took me out for awhile, actually two knee surgeries or whatever, and divorce, custody,
lawsuits, everything I've dealt with since these six years' span and to finally win it
it was kinda like just thank God that I've stuck with it and that I believed in my ability,
I believed in me but I continue to work because I was written off so many times since then
and just kept fightin'.
>>presenter: Um-hum. So since you are at Google, I thought we'd talk a little bit about technology
and the Web. You're one of the 50 most followed profiles on Google+ right now, I think you
have two million followers or somethin' and you have millions of fans that follow you
on other social networks: Facebook, Twitter. How do you follow, how do you use your social
media? What's the role that it plays for you right now?
>>Dwyane Wade: Well, I use it so many different ways. I mean social media's a good thing and
a bad thing 'cause you really have no private life.
But I think it's a good thing first of all 'cause you really get to connect one on one
you get to connect. Me and you can connect just on Twitter and you can really feel like
you know him and I know you, we might not never meet. How you doin'?
But I think I use it in so many different ways to express myself from a standpoint of
people really getting' to know who I am. And obviously I talk about a lot of things that
I'm gettin' involved in and I'm doin' whether it's Foundation, whether it's me showin' up
to a book signin' somewhere, me endorsin' a product and wantin' people to try it out
and do these things. I do so much but I talk about my kids a lot, you see I have fun on
there, with my fans I try to have fun on there as much as possible. I mean I get talked about
a lot on Twitter so --
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: it's not easy to read all the comments but I try to make light of it. Someone
say somethin' negative I say, "You need a hug?"
"It's not my fault you're angry."
So, but I enjoy it, I'm amazed that that many people will follow me and wanna know anything
about me. I've never thought that someday roughly all these millions of people gonna
wanna know that my life is that interesting, I don't think it is, but I guess somebody
>>presenter: Yeah. When you, I mean, a lot of this stuff is pretty recent, when you started
in the league this stuff didn't exist
>>Dwyane Wade: No.
>>presenter: So I'm curious to get your perspective on has all this stuff changed the sort of
public life of a star professional athlete?
>>Dwyane Wade: No question it has. I mean this is a different time for professional
athletes. It's like I said some symbolism, everyone know where you at at all, well not,
it's not always accurate because I've been in Miami and somebody Twitted all the pictures,
"Ah I just seen D. Wade." It was the back of somebody's head it was back in Tennessee
somewhere. I'm like, "I'm not out there."
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: But for the majority of the time most people know where you at.
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: You can walk by and say, "Oh I just seen D. Wade at walkin' into, walkin'
down the street with his young, what color's that, is that teal? Is that teal? Walkin'
down the street with this lady with curly hair with a teal shirt and took a picture
of us backing in lookin' like we goin' into a hotel but we're really comin' to Google.
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: It's [chuckles] --
[chuckles] That's the way the world is so --
it's the privacy is really, you really have no privacy at all.
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: And so.
>>presenter: Well, so there's the privacy aspect right and then there's the other aspect
right which is you have this instant communication platform to every fan, journalists, whoever.
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: So you have these younger guys who are comin' like you that are pretty young
when they're comin' into the league and now they have, they can just talk to a million
people by --
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: the push of a button. Do the more veteran guys see that as liability or
like a concern for the team dynamic?
>>Dwyane Wade: It could be dependin' on the young guy comin' in.
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: You had a, if anybody had, if Michael Beasley, Mario Chalmers and those
guys when they was rookies when they came in together, if social media was big then
oh, we would have been in trouble.
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: Those rookies right there was terrible.
We would have been in trouble. So I guess it just depends on the rookies that come in
if they mature or not so, yeah.
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: They's bad.
>>presenter: So I mean this is going to be a central part of your kids' lives as they
get older but do you worry about them getting exposed? You talked a little bit about them
getting hassled in class right but like if they set up a Twitter account or something
like and they're young do you worry about them getting exposed in this sort of social
media world to all kinds of stuff that you wouldn't be comfortable with?
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, I mean I can't imagine bein' a kid and growin' up in this time. The
world is so different from obviously when even when I was growin' up and I couldn't
imagine. Only thing I could try to do is continue to tell 'em right from wrong and hopefully
they continue to abide by the rules and things that I'm tellin' 'em what's right. And I know
there's gonna be times come up when they gonna do things that I'm not gonna approve of and
hopefully they learn from their mistake that they're making and they continue to grow from
it. My kids haven't asked me yet for a Twitter handle yet, they haven't asked me for to be
on Facebook and stuff yet so and they only 10 so hopefully I can hold out a little longer.
If I had a conversation it's gonna be quick it's gonna be like, "No."
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: It's gonna be very quick.
But I don't really wanna have that conversation right now so they haven't asked for it yet
so we still in the phone and BBMin' and all that stuff, they still cook with that so I
don't wanna go through somethin' and see a Z. Wade Twitter handle and Zaire takin' a
picture in his own bedroom.
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: They gonna do stuff like that, like they gonna try to be sneaky but it's
gonna be a picture of them in they bathroom as you might--
that's in the house, I know that's your page. [chuckles]
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: No one else has been in here so --
>>presenter: [chuckles]
You mention that your kids watch YouTube all the time and you call Zaire the king of all
media in the book.
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: I know you have a channel on YouTube also. Do you have any favorite videos
or channels that you watch?
>>Dwyane Wade: You know what, like I said Zaire is, he's the king of watchin' YouTube,
him and my nephew watch YouTube, Zaire really he gets up early just to watch YouTube before
he goes to school.
It's a problem like --
it's seriously a problem. I think it still be dark outside, like early in the sixes and
he gets up and he dresses real fast, he might forget to brush his teeth, brush his hair,
but he's gonna get on YouTube --
and he's gonna watch videos, he gonna watch all this stuff and it excites him. Me, I mean,
I don't know I go as the wind blow, sometime I'm on it often and sometime I'm not on it
at all so I'm late on a lot of things.
>>presenter: Yeah. In the book you talk about how when you were growin' up some of your
new school clothes were clothes that had been left at the local Laundromat right that's
what used to --
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, I used to get some nice things out of the Laundromat.
That's nice.
>>presenter: Now you've been named the NBA's best dressed player and somebody told me that
you're good friends with Anna Wintour and --
>>Dwyane Wade: Oh, Anna.
>>presenter: and first of all, what?
But also --
do you ever think about,"How did I get from from A to B on that?"
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, I have no idea how --
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: how that happened. I got a great team around me that's all, they push
me, they made Anna be friends with me, I think.
[laughter] No it's been cool. I think as a kid I've always
loved the thought of dressin' up. I wasn't able to do it my whole life but I used to
say I used to see my dad, my dad used to work and he delivered pretty much delivered boxes,
he might have had a sexy title for it but the man delivered boxes to other companies,
that's what he did.
But he used to dress up on every Friday. I used to have to get up and iron his clothes
so I know he used to dress up every Friday. And I used to see that and I used to be like,
"Well, one day when I got to work this is how I wanna go to work." So my thought of
dressin' up came from that and then just goin' through life and now you startin' to feel
who you are and see what you like and I got into a great situation with my stylist where
she kind of like pushed me out of my comfort zone in a sense. I still get flak, and my
sister not here but she always give me flak about what I'm wearin' cause she like we wear
the same stuff like --
like, "Your pants are red, I got the same pants on."
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: So like but like she's pushed me and now I'm just comfortable. If anybody
seen me on Letterman the other night I had on this bright yellow jacket, it was like
the seat covers right there and I wasn't comfortable in it but she was like, "Come on you're gonna
look good. I mean you gotta put it on." And I was like, "Forget it." And I walked out
there with as much confidence as possible and hopefully I didn't get murdered for wearin'
the yellow jacket. But it actually didn't look too bad once I kept watchin' it.
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: My business manager she told me she couldn't hear the first half of the
interview because of my jacket was so loud.
But it worked and when I walked out David was like, "Is that yellow?" I was like, "Yes."
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: So I enjoy it and havin' the opportunity. Last night I went out to Fashion
Night Out and last year was my first year here and I couldn't believe how many people
was so excited about Fashion Night Out and it was like a big concert goin' on, it was
like everything in one, it was like everything like so many people on the street you can't
drive nowhere. So last night really bein' a part of goin' to the Calvin Klein and bein'
a part of the Calvin Klein Collection and sittin' next to Anna Wintour signin' my book
and signin' the Vogue Magazine was kind of like a cool moment. I just think about how
far I came to be here so fast so like I said, I mean, we must have somethin' on Anna, I
don't know what it is --
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: but it's good to have a great relationship with someone who's a legend and
respected so much the way she is.
>>presenter: Yeah, yeah, definitely.
>>Dwyane Wade: She's nice to me, I don't know about everybody else.
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: I seen September, too, and I was like, "What, I don't know about this
one." But now she's very nice to me so.
>>presenter: That's cool.
>>Dwyane Wade: Thought I'd add that.
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: [laughs]
>>presenter: Let's talk about, I have just a couple last questions here and then we'll
open it up to everybody here about the future for you. So where do you picture yourself
right now in 10 years?
>>Dwyane Wade: Well, I won't be playin' hopefully. I'll be 40 so hopefully I'll be retired. And
hopefully that all the opportunities that are being created now, there's so many doors
that I'm so blessed to be able to walk through hopefully I'll continue to find my niche of
what I wanna do next.
Like I said I got so many, I got too many things that I'm tryin' to do right now. But
I think this is the right time for me to figure out what's next for Dwyane Wade even though
I still wanna play at least another seven years. I think that'd be good in an ideal,
perfect world and then after that I can start stalking my kids.
I told Zaire I was like, cause I always tell him, "Y'all gettin' out of my house one day."
I be like, "Eight years, you outta here son." But so then I told him I said, "Once you go
to college I'm gonna buy an apartment right by your dorm room."
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: "I'm gonna [chuckles] I'm gonna live through you."
So I'll just hopefully move into the next phase of my life and --
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: do somethin' that I again enjoy doin' and but also spend a lot of time with
my kids. Zion at the time will be, like, if I retire when I want to will be like 12 years
old --
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: really gettin' into the meat of his goin' to high school soon so it'll
be kinda cool.
>>presenter: Yeah. You mentioned in there that Shaq was one of the people who really
introduced you to the world of like being --
>>Dwyane Wade: Silly.
>>presenter: young, like, but yeah, yeah, but also being a brand or like being a personality
beyond --
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: the game.
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>presenter: Like to you feel like that has started you on that trajectory to get ready
for some post-game stuff, too?
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, it was great havin' Shaq at the time when I did. It kind of helped
me come out of my shell. We would have not been able to do this interview years ago,
no way possible. I'd have been lookin' at that clock nervous, sweatin' like, "I got
an hour?"
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: It's no way I'd of been able to sit up here. But so kind of bein' around
him kind of helped open me up a little bit. He came along, he coined me Flash at the time
and kinda gave me a different person to be. So I really fed into it, like I really was
Flash on the basketball court, like don't call me Dwyane. I am Flash.
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: That's weird.
But so it really was big and I think it just opened me up to people to really see who I
am and me to see who I am in a sense and not be the introvert kid that I was when I was
>>presenter: Yeah. Again goin' to the 10 year, 15 year range like what is the thing that
you most want for your kids when they get to that age? Like what is the thing that you
wanna make sure is just right with them?
>>Dwyane Wade: Well, I mean to me obviously I think I want them to have an unbelievable
education, I want them to kind of have their vision and their dreams of who they think
they wanna become. I'm a big believer in dream big and vision boards and all that, I'm a
big believer in that. It's puttin' down what you wanna be, who you wanna be and it's no
problem with workin' towards that. And if somethin' steer you in a different direction
then you take that road, but you need to have a vision. So hopefully around that time they,
I'm payin' a lot for their education, seriously it's like college, like college fund and my
son's five years old, it's like it's a lot of money. So it better work out.
>>presenter: Yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: So but hopefully on my end it's just make sure that I take care of my
responsibility, my job, to make sure that they don't have the concern, if they can't
right away find out what they wanna do or find a niche that they have enough security
>>presenter: Um-hum.
>>Dwyane Wade: to fall back on.
>>presenter: Yeah. Alright cool, so let's open it up, there's two microphones, I think,
so for questions just line up and we'll just alternate back and forth.
You're first [ indistinct ], you wanna go for it?
>>male #1: Hey D. Wade, a big fan. So like you're like the father of style in the NBA
and you actually pull it off. What are your thoughts on like Russell Westbook and Kevin
Durant showing up --
like clowns?
>>Dwyane Wade: Thank you, I appreciate that. So what's you're sayin', they don't pull it
>>male #1: Have you seen [unintelligible]?
>>Dwyane Wade: I am not the one to judge.
But it's not for me, I couldn't do it but he's what he's got and he's getting everyone's
attention. I get a question about Russell Westbrook fashion every time I'm do somethin'
about fashion. So he's doin' his job of gettin' out there, so it works. But I don't think
you would look good in it --
and [chuckles] and I don't think I would look good in it.
So [chuckles]
>>female #1: Hey there.
>>Dwyane Wade: How ya doin'?
>>female #1: Sara, huge fan as well from Miami. I grew up down there and I'd just love to
get your perspective on what it's been like raising your sons in Miami. People always
ask me, I've been in New York for five years now, "Are you ever gonna move back down?"
It's always something I've considered but I'd love to hear what you think.
>>Dwyane Wade: Are you gonna move back down?
>>female #1: Maybe, maybe.
>>Dwyane Wade: I just thought I outta add to the people.
>>female #1: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: 'Cause when you retell the story you be like, "Yeah D. Wade be askin'
me if I'm gonna move back down."
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: "People are always askin' me."
I do that all the time, I name drop.
[chuckles] I think my kids rather enjoy livin' in Miami. I mean you think about obviously
everyone knows that it's the Sunshine State so they enjoy the ability to be able to go
out and do many different activities outside, they don't have to go through the winters,
those tough winters like in Chicago where they kinda grew up in a sense.
So I think they like it, I think they like how every day, I remember goin' through the
season where we won 15 games but no matter what when I woke up and looked outside and
went outside I was like, "Ah, it's not that bad." I think they like wakin' up to it's
not that bad kinda feeling 'cause when you're growin' up in Chicago, Milwaukee, Detroit,
and all those places it's kinda like, "Man, it's another day?"
And you look out the window you like, "This sucks."
So I think [chuckles] I think they like wakin' up and and like, "Ah, let's go get it. Let's
go to school." It's cool.
>>presenter: Nice.
>>female #1: Thanks.
>>presenter: Okay.
>>male #2: Hey, I'm Aaron. If you're the most stylish guy on the team who's the least stylish
>>Dwyane Wade: Let me think, let me think. Do, do, do, do, do, do do. Oh Joe Anthony.
He's terrible, he's terrible, he's terrible.
There's no help for him either so.
'Cause he's cheap, 'cause he's cheap, he's not gonna spend no money so --
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah and we got, so Joel Anthony and James Jones. James Jones is, he [chuckles]
is, I love him he's one of the best teammates I ever had, one of the funniest guys ever.
But if we go on a two week road trip you'd be lucky to get two pair of jeans outta him
and more than two polos. Like he keeps it simple as it get. He's gonna pack one pair
of shoes, he gonna pack two pairs of jeans, and two polos and that's gonna be two weeks.
It's like you didn't think you gonna go eat --
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: or, doesn't care.
>>male #2: You gonna help him out or no?
>>Dwyane Wade: No, he's not spendin' no money.
You gotta, it's an investment to dress nice, it's very expensive now days and J.J. like,
"For what?"
>>presenter: [laughs]
"I'm married with like five kids nobody wanna look at me." [laughs]
So I love him, it's hilarious. So we gotta a couple guys who don't really get into the
dressin'. They like to see what we wear and that's about it.
>>male #2: Thanks.
>>Dwyane Wade: Hopefully J.J. don't really hear me. You can't tell him what I said.
>>male #3: Hey, D. Wade, [ indistinct ]. So lots been said about Heat for the past two
seasons but you've been totally cool in media I mean is it just you're a good actor or you
just don't care about what media says?
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, I don't. I'm not gonna say I don't care, I do care, I'm not immune
to it, but you can't really let it consume your life in whatever you decide to do. And
I get talked about obviously with my fashion, I get talked about when I don't perform the
right way, but no one can be as hard on me as I can be on myself.
So yes it's a part of the job and it's unfortunate that media does that but. Now I think one
thing that's great with social network is you can kinda control your own in a sense
and you can beat 'em to it, [chuckles] to beat 'em to the punch. So it's a part of it
and it's not meant for everybody to deal with it, to handle it so I think that we do a good
job of try and handle the best way possible.
>>male #3: Thank you.
>>presenter: Over here.
>>male #4: Hi. When a lot of us were growin' up our parents are always embarrassing us,
we're very embarrassed of 'em. So I was wondering, as a celebrity, do find that your kids are
embarrassed of you at times and of your friends, your friends' kids?
>>Dwyane Wade: Good question. They haven't told me yet --
but I'm sure there been a few times I ain't performed right they've been like, "Man oh
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: I don't really wanna go to school,"
'cause they gonna hear it. But I think it's gonna hurt me when the day comes that I'm
not the cool dad no more. It's kinda comin' soon 'cause they already tellin' me that so,
but they don't really mean it yet, I think so.
So, but yeah, it's a time where you kinda get away from, you grow out of it in a sense,
so it's gonna hurt me when I can't, I mean, now I like kissin' my kids on the forehead,
there's gonna become a time when they not gonna be havin' it no more.
And that's my boys, man, so it's gonna hurt. I'm gettin' emotional --
>>presenter: [chuckles]
thinkin' about it.
>>male #5: So Ryan, I lived in Miami for 20 years and I was at game three in 2006 when
the Heat were down by 12 points and --
>>Dwyane Wade: 13, go ahead, go ahead.
>>male #5: 13, sorry, sorry.
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>male #5: 13.
>>Dwyane Wade: That's fine.
>>male #5: Anyways and you took over the game and even from before that I was a big fan.
But my real question is more about fatherhood. So I have a five year old as well and I've
found that when I first became a father I had this concept that I was gonna be his teacher
and that I was gonna be the one teachin' him everything, but the more he gets older and
the more I get mature basically I've realized that he is more my teacher. So I was wonderin'
if you feel like the same way?
>>Dwyane Wade: You hit it right on the, you hit it right on the head. I talk about it
in my book, there's a passage in there where I talk about learnin' from my kids. I'm learnin'
how to be a father, I'm learnin' how to be a parent from them, they teach me every day.
And you guys see I like to make light of a lot of situations, but it's seriously I took
parenting classes, like I said I go to their therapy sessions, and it's times where situations
come up I have no idea how to handle it. But I'm learnin' from my kid, the personality
that he has, I'm learnin' from his history of how much trouble has he got in before,
so I'm learnin' from them how to handle these situations.
So I learn so much, just as much as they gonna learn from me, it's the same as I'm gonna
learn from them. And I always tell them when we together I'm like, "Hey, we learnin' on
the fly together." And that's just the way it is. There's no guidebook to tell you how
to be the perfect parent or perfect father or tell you exactly how to handle every situation
that comes up.
Sometimes you gotta go off your gut and we're gonna be wrong sometime and hopefully they
understand that and we gonna be right sometimes. So I'm glad to hear that you have that mentality
because that's exactly what I said in the book. But some parents don't have that mindset.
>>male #5: Yeah. Thanks.
>>Dwyane Wade: Thank you.
>>male #6: So I was actually sitting here listening to you and I realized that we got
a lot in common, like we absolutely love our family, we love our children, and then I said
also we love basketball. Who's better, that's still debatable.
>>Dwyane Wade: [laughs]
>>male #6: But on a serious note, do you feel any pressure with bringing your children up
in, if they say they love basketball do you push 'em in that direction or do you try to
let them figure out what they wanna do?
>>Dwyane Wade: You know what I'm gonna come back to that other part.
I'm gonna answer your question first.
I'm just that person that just believe that whatever they wanna do I'm gonna support and
obviously they wanna play basketball, it's something that we can share together, but
it's nothin' that I would push them towards. When you tell me this is seriously what you
wanna do I will make sure that you have all resources you need to be able to do it. But
I'm all about somethin' else.
Like my youngest, Zion, he's played, he likes soccer. Even though he quit last year he's
back on the team this year. And I'm like, "Ooh cool." So now I'm tryin' to learn more
about soccer, I wanna get into soccer more. So they gonna be they own man and they gonna
have they own idea of what they wanna do, and I applaud that and I celebrate that and
I want them to be that.
Now back to --
back to the basketball thing. I love your confidence, that's all I'm sayin'.
>>presenter: [laughs]
>>Dwyane Wade: Anybody watch Love & Hip Hop in here?
>>voice in audience: Oh yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: Y'all watch that crazy show? Don't he kinda look like the guy that's on
is married to the rapper, the girl who raps, the good couple, the good couple?
>>voices in audience: Yeah, yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah, the good couple.
Kinda looks like him.
>>presenter: [laughs] That could be him, that could be him.
Let's go over here.
>>male #7: Hey, D. Wade.
>>Dwyane Wade: Did you say that was a good show? Man.
>>male #7: Hi, huge NBA fan here.
>>Dwyane Wade: Thank you.
>>male #7: I was just wondering what do you think about the current era? Obviously like
when you guys came in 2003 that was an amazing year in terms of the talent in the draft,
but then there's been several other years where it was just incredible players.
>>Dwyane Wade: Yeah.
>>male #6: Where do you think this current era is in terms of the history of the NBA,
is it like a golden era, the talent, the teams, the competition?
>>Dwyane Wade: Well I think that obviously I believe that 2003 was that year was a great
time for the NBA. I kinda felt like before that the NBA had a couple down seasons in
a sense and I felt that there was new energy for the league that it needed at the time.
And I just think now that we're continuing to get very good young players and you kinda
look at it and understand that our game is in great hands with all the young players
comin' up. So our game is as big as it's ever been. And even though the older players before
us will argue and it's always debatable of what era was the best era, I just think that
our era's the most important era to grow the game because we're doin' so much globally
to grow this game, so many kids really gettin' into, worldwide, really gettin' into the game
of basketball, it's so big everywhere. So I just think that we're doin' a great job
of continuing to try to grow it.
I mean David Stern and the NBA has done an unbelievable job of kinda changing the outlook
of how players was kinda viewed in a sense and they've done an unbelievable job of that.
So I'm glad that I'm in this era and not the other eras.
>>male #7: Since you're in New York tough question, Knicks or Nets who's gonna be better
this year.
>>presenter: [chuckles]
>>Dwyane Wade: There's a tough question because no one knows how the Nets are gonna come together.
They put together a pretty decent team, they gonna be pretty good, and then with the excitement
in Brooklyn and everything they put together a good team. But you never know how long it
takes the continuity to take, to really work.
The Knicks kinda have some in a sense, they did lose Jeremy Lin but they still have a
lot of the core of their team. So because of that they might start a little faster than
the Nets, you just never know. So I'm sure it brings excitement to the City of New York
and as a fan of the game I will sit back and do the same thing you're doin' and watch and
see who would be the best in New York.
>>male #7: I think it's gonna be the Knicks.
>>presenter: Alright, I think we have time for one more.
>>male #8: Hey, huge fan. I was just wondering you said your kids and a bunch of the kids
of your teammates play basketball all the time. Who's the best?
>>Dwyane Wade: Of all the kids?
>>male #8: Of all the kids on your team, yeah.
>>Dwyane Wade: You know that's a great question because if you ask each of them they would
all say themselves.
Yeah, so I don't get the luxury to be able to watch them play together. I think right
now a lot of it has to do with who's the oldest and who has the most height, so they ain't
reached the point they're all that talented yet. But they be havin', they be competin'
up there. There's been a couple, separate them a couple of times I heard.
They get real and so it's good, it's good and some of them play together like AAU Basketball,
some of them play together. I think Lebron's youngest son, Bronny, Lebron Jr., his older
son, he plays like he's seven, I think he plays like the 12 year olds or somethin'.
Like, but he try to humble him already. But he's gettin' that experience so they all are
gonna be in competition with each other for a long time to come. So it's gonna be interesting
to see how it all shakes out.
>>presenter: Cool. Alright, we'll wrap it up here Dwyane. Thanks very much for comin'.
Dwyane Wade everybody.
[applause and cheering]
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Dwyane Wade - A Father First: How My Life Became Bigger Than Basketball

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titan_m303 published on January 2, 2020
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