Zhejiang hopes for Wade fade fast

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Dwyane Wade.[file photo: China Daily]

Rumors that Dwyane Wade was mulling a move to China kept the 12-time NBA All-Star in the social-media spotlight most of the summer, but now it doesn't seem very likely.

According to weekend reports, the only option Wade is now considering is whether to return to the Miami Heat for a 16th NBA season in October.

"If I'm playing the game of basketball this year, it will be in a Miami uniform," Wade told Associated Press at the Jr. NBA World Championships in Orlando, Florida, on Saturday.

Wade was reportedly offered a three-year, $25 million contract last month by the Zhejiang Golden Bulls, which would have made him the CBA's highest-paid player.

According to Sohu Sports, a source at Zhejiang said: "It was a tiny possibility and we did everything we could. We tried until the last minute and we have no regrets."

Still, the 36-year-old Wade apparently isn't in a rush about rejoining the Heat. "There's no clock on me," he told AP.

The three-time NBA champion played his first 13 seasons with the Heat before signing with the Chicago Bulls for 2016-17.

He started last season with the Cleveland Cavaliers before being traded back to Miami for the final 21 games of the campaign, over which he averaged 12.0 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.1 assists coming off the bench.

"I want him back as a player," Heat president Pat Riley said last month.

"I want him back as a competitor. I want him back as a guy who wants to have the greatest year he ever had as a player.

"I read articles saying, 'Dwyane is done, he's lost a step, he's not the same player, he might not have the same motivation.' But I still see a player who can contribute heavily if he really wants to."

Since Wade's rookie season, he has been a favorite of millions of Chinese fans. His Weibo account boasts 5.85 million followers.

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