MIAMI — Chris Bosh couldn’t end his night — one full of great memories, emotional tributes and colorful stories — without a rendition of the scream he made famous during the Big Three era.
So he unleashed a ferocious yell of “Come on!” to Miami Heat fans, and they gave it right back — and more.
On Tuesday, Bosh became the fourth Heat player — joining Alonzo Mourning, Tim Hardaway and Shaquille O’Neal — to have his jersey lifted to the rafters of AmericanAirlines Arena. The fans rose to their feet as Bosh’s No. 1 ascended and several Heat greats paid him tribute.
“When I was down and out, when I was going through things, you guys taught me how to rebound,” Bosh said. “Thank you.”
All of the current Heat players and several from past teams, including Mourning, Shane Battier and Juwan Howard, were on the court to watch the ceremony.
Heat president Pat Riley spoke for the group, saying: “He’s not just a superstar. He’s an incredible super human. I just want to welcome Chris Bosh, forever and always, a lifer of the Miami Heat.”
Dwyane Wade introduced Bosh as “one of the greatest players to ever live” and “the piece and the person that made the Big Three era legendary.” Wade also acknowledged Bosh as the “greatest videobomber in NBA history.”
Wade wrote on Instagram on Wednesday that it was “priceless” to be able to be part of Bosh’s moment.
Bosh spoke last, and of course he had plenty of jokes at Wade’s expense. He also was emotional at several points in the ceremony and delivered a portion of his speech in Spanish to recognize Miami’s large Spanish-speaking community, a move that drew enthusiastic cheers.
Bosh immortalized his place in Heat history during Game 6 of the 2013 NBA Finals.
His offensive rebound of LeBron James‘ missed shot and pass to Ray Allen for the game-tying 3-pointer near the end of regulation was the defining play of the Heat’s run to a second consecutive title.
Riley called it the “biggest rebound and assist in the history of the franchise.”
Chris Bosh tells Scott Van Pelt how special it is to share his jersey retirement ceremony with his family and looks ahead to his future away from the NBA.
Bosh also will be remembered as one of the trailblazers for what has become the stretch-5 position. His combination of size, athleticism, speed, playmaking ability and, later in his career, 3-point shooting made him a rare talent in NBA history.
His colorful personality, selflessness in one of the era’s first superteams and dominance over the 13 NBA seasons he played speak for themselves.
“I’ll see you guys in Springfield,” Bosh said half-jokingly about the Basketball Hall of Fame in Massachusetts. “It’s easy. I was pretty good, so I’ll make it pretty easy on the committee.”
Bosh’s bout with blood clots ended his NBA career. H