Miami Heat basketball player Dwyane Wade is being criticized for taking pregame shots during the Canadian anthem at a game against the Toronto Raptors at the Air Canada Centre.
In a video uploaded Saturday on YouTube by user Jer M, it shows Wade taking shots behind his teammates as they line up for "O Canada."
As the only Canadian team in the NBA, the Canadian anthem is sung with much pride at the ACC and every city the Raptors visit. During game three in their playoff series with Miami, Wade did end up standing with his team during "The Star-Spangled Banner."
Some basketball fans took their thoughts to Twitter, including Toronto mayor John Tory and city councillor Norm Kelly.
No excuse for Dwayne Wade to shoot during the Canadian National anthem. His comments afterwards make it worse.— Jerad Shaw (@shawonsports35) May 9, 2016
Dwayne wade has a "ritual" before every game, oh my bad your ritual is more important than a national anthem.. Btw your ritual didn't work— Brad⚽️ (@PereiraBrad4) May 9, 2016
@NBA I am really heated that the NBA has nothing to say about Dwayne Wade disrespecting our anthem. I have lost respect for the NBA on this.— Anthony R. Samuels (@ACYTOTONY) May 8, 2016
Dwayne Wade won't stop shooting warm ups during Canadian anthem today. Reverse that situation and US would be declaring war on Canada— Jeff Hall (@JeffHall87) May 8, 2016
After losing against the Raptors in game three 95-91, Wade was interviewed about his pregame routine.
"I'm not a disrespectful person. So if anybody thinks I'm being disrespectful towards a country, then they have no idea of who Dwyane Wade is," he told ESPN.
Wade said he took shots during the anthem due to a time-clock management issue, and taking warm-up shots is something he does before every game.
According to Yahoo Sports, the NBA also released this official statement: "We spoke to the team and the Heat will work with its players to make sure no pregame routines interfere with either anthem going forward.”
However some fans were still not pleased with the 34-year-old veteran player's response. Sports site SB Nation even came up with some very Canadian punishments Wade should face — including joining the NHL and becoming a Mountie.
The Toronto Raptors take on the Miami Heat for game four in Toronto on Monday at 8 p.m. EST.
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