With a 3-2 deficit against the San Antonio Spurs, the pressure is on the Miami Heat like never before. However, during this time in 2006, things were looking up for the South Beach squad. Facing off against the Dallas Mavericks, the series was even at 2-2 when the teams met on June 18, 2006. During Game 5, an already tense series hit a boiling point as the final seconds were marred with officiating controversies. Regardless of the reaction by fans, Miami ended up winning the game in overtime 101-100, taking a 3-2 advantage and eventually winning their first NBA Championship in Game 6.
Dwyane Wade’s performance in Game 5 was the stuff superstars are made of. Wade posted 43 points on the night, but what was even more impressive was his shooting from the charity stripe. He shot 21-25 from the free throw line, setting an NBA Finals record for most free throws made in a game. Performances like this helped to power Miami to their first ring in the following game, and Wade ended up earning the Finals MVP honors. When it was all said and done, D. Wade averaged 34.7 points per game in the, which is the third-highest of all-time in the Finals.
Since this career-defining game, Wade has changed sneaker sponsorships a number of times. He started with Converse, transferred to Jordan Brand, and finally settling with his current Li-Ning signature models. For the Mavericks series, Wade wore a special “Finals” makeup of his first official signature sneaker, the Converse Wade 1.