Former NBA star Dwyane Wade made a name on the court as a three-time NBA champion now he wants to make his mark in the business of basketball. Wade has purchased an ownership stake in the Utah Jazz.
Wade, an eight-time All-NBA player with the Miami Heat, will join the ownership group led by technology entrepreneur and Qualtrics founder Ryan Smith and his wife, Ashley, who acquired a majority interest in the Utah Jazz in late 2020.
There has been a surge of Hall of Fame-level players who have taken NBA ownership stakes, including Grant Hill (Atlanta Hawks), Shaquille O’Neal (Sacramento Kings), and Charlotte Hornets majority owner Michael Jordan, ESPN reported.
“This goes way beyond the dream I had to just play basketball in the NBA,” Wade told ESPN. “I’ve seen Shaq do it in Sacramento. I’ve seen Grant Hill do it in Atlanta. I’ve seen Jordan do it in Charlotte. If this partnership is going to be anything like my relationship is with Ryan, there are going to be a lot of things that I’ll want to be involved in. …
“Unfortunately, people in my community don’t get this opportunity, and I do not take it lightly to have this opportunity. To make real change, this is where you have to be — at the top — and Ryan knows that. I’m thankful for him, and I know too that I bring a lot to this partnership outside of just my basketball knowledge and skills.”
The terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
The news seemed well received on Twitter.
The Black Millennial Entrepreneur Podcast tweeted,”Excited to see retired Black athlete’s foray into entrepreneurship. Congratulations to Dwade on acquring minority stake in the Utah Jazz”
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“As a kid from the south side of Chicago, this partnership goes beyond my wildest dreams of playing basketball, and I hope to inspire the next generation of dreamers,” Wade said in a statement.
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