MIAMI – The Miami Heat are preparing to face Dwyane Wade for the first time.
After 13 season and three championships, Wade will return to the American Airlines Arena as a member of the Chicago Bulls.
"Who knows? There will be emotion, I know that," Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra said. "There's not a textbook on this, so I don't know what to necessarily expect. I think the crowd will be great. I think it will be electric in the building. I think there will be a great response to Dwyane, as there should be."
The Heat plan to run a video tribute to Wade, as they do for all returning champions.
Spoelstra said he isn't sure he wants to watch the tribute.
"I don't get emotional about anything, except for these kind of things," he said.
Spoelstra said he was "shocked and down" after Wade decided to leave for Chicago.
The head coach said his wife told snapped him out of it and said, "We have a wedding to prepare for."
Hassan Whiteside said he will tell Wade, "Good luck, but not too much luck."
Whiteside said it's going to be electric and an exciting game. Whiteside said he misses Wade a lot, "more so off the court than on the court."
Whiteside knows he needs to stay down on Wade's famous pump fake.
Udonis Haslem played his entire career with Wade.
"Once you step between the lines and the clock starts ticking, it will be business as usual," Haslem said. "Probably beforehand it will be a different scene."
Haslem said 95 percent of the team had not been playing against him. Haslem said his favorite Wade moment was when "he got hit in Indiana and then I hit somebody."
Haslem has always had Wade's back. Thursday night, for the first time, they'll be going against each other.