That touchdown pass from Dwyane Wade to LeBron James in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Boston Celtics wasn’t a deep six, but rather a long two.
But it wasn’t the first time Wade and James have connected with such a pass, and both know it also won’t be the last.
“It’s just always looking up,” Wade said of grabbing a rebound and tossing a 30-yard strike.
“Obviously when you look up, you get to see a guy streaking, someone that you trust that will catch the ball, that can finish.”
They are opportunities that Wade said simply are too tempting to bypass.
“Sometimes it’s a risky pass, sometimes not so much,” he said. ”But it’s just always having your head up and always looking for someone else when you get it, instead of dribbling with your head down.” Having James as a target, of course, doesn’t hurt.
“It’s a like a quarterback,” Wade said. “If you’ve got a good receiver, it makes you look better.”
So he essentially favors going to his tight end.
“When I grab the rebound, a lot of times I look right up, and I kind of see my guy a little bit ahead of the crowd and I just throw it up to him,” Wade said.
Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, of course, looks at it purely in basketball terms.
“Yeah, those are the ones that everybody notices,” he said. “But we notice the attacks we get off the misses, either fast breaks or second actions. That’s when we’re at our best. Everyone knows that.”
You won’t find any touchdown references from Spoelstra.
“They claim that they are former football players,” Spoelstra said. “I don’t necessarily care about the highlights. It’s more about the efficiency and speed that we play with. That’s important for us.”
Wade’s claims as a quarterback, however, are quite limited, unlike James and his scholastic achievements as a receiver.
Wade’s football resume?
“That was like in eighth grade,” he said. “I was like backup quarterback.”