This is such a great move.
So wonderfully, heartwarmingly great.
Dwyane Wade returning to the Heat has nothing to do with how this season will play out, which will remain decidedly less than great. But that's why trading a spare second-round pick for Wade is so great.
Pat Riley didn't make this move as a champion architect. He made it as a champion marketer. He made it as a champion dream-maker. He made it as someone who can't get close to the trophy but can get close to the heart.
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If you can't be great, be warm.
If you can't be contending, be interesting.
If you can't get the next great player out there at the trade deadline, get that golden oldie who makes fans feel some feel good. OK, a lot of feel good. Wade is such a golden oldie at this point he should join the dance troupe during some time out.
What's not to like here?
The question was never if Wade would return to the Heat. It was when. They had amicable separation two summers ago – at least as amicable as separations go. Wade wanted more money than the Heat wanted to give. Fine. That's business.
If Wade liked playing in Chicago less than Dolphins quarterback Jay Cutler did, the timing still wasn't right for him to return last summer. The Heat had a good chemistry experiment going that Wade would upset.
Wade, too, probably wasn't ready to come off the bench of a non-contending team. So he had a reunion tour with LeBron James in Cleveland that quickly became a Divorce Tour. Locker-room squabbles. LeBron setting up his next move. Ugly all around.
By Thursday, the timing was perfect to bring Wade home. He was sufficiently aware of the dimming of the lights after turning 36 in January and humbled by other teams' dysfunction.
The Heat, who lost Dion Waiters early on, were in the midst of a five-game losing streak that reminded everyone they have sixth-place-in-the-East talent. The minimal price was right, too.
So, again, what's not to like here?
No one's pretending Wade at 36 is the Wade of 26. But can he supply a big moment or two? Will he inject some energy into a season needing some? Might he be an option for a late shot the Heat are having trouble with?
What would you give to watch him make a late shot and jump on a courtside table for an encore rendition of, "This is my house!" That's the kind of dream this move allows.
This return needs no introduction. Wade grew up before Heat fans, from that rookie on wobbly legs who won a playoff series against New Orleans to the champion who led the takedown of Dallas and then the formation of The Big Three.
He became this generation's Dan Marino in South Florida. He was that big, that good, that kind of a generational player on a generational franchise. And now he's back home for the final stretch of his career.
If the Heat and Wade needed this to mend their relationship, fans did, too. They were split on Wade's leaving. Some felt the pain of his departure. Others felt he was too greedy. But there's no need to debate how this reunion feels.
What a perfect time for this return, too. Look how dreary South Florida's pro sports scene is. The Dolphins are trying to piece hope back together again. The Marlins are broken. The Panthers are on a small winning patch, but aren't yet on a playoff road. And the Heat, again, have lost five in a row.
Sometimes you get the happy ending in sports. Jason Taylor got it with the Dolphins by returning to the team after a time away for one final run in the South Florida sun.
Now Wade gets that run. And the Heat get it. And the fans get it. It won't make this season end anywhere different this spring. It just makes the trip there a lot warmer.