MIAMI • When Miami Heat star and future Hall of Famer Dwyane Wade calls time on his 16-year National Basketball Association career at the end of the season, it will leave such a void in his heart that he will "be in therapy".
In an interview with ESPN's Rachel Nichols that aired on Friday, the guard, who is averaging 14.5 points per game this season, confirmed he would require professional help to cope with "the big change".
He said: "Seriously, I meant it. I told my wife, I said, 'I need to do therapy, and we need to do a little bit.'
"I was always against someone that don't know me telling me how to live my life or giving me instructions. But I need someone to talk to about it.
"Even though I got a long life to live, other great things I can accomplish and do, it's not this. So it's going to be different."
While he admitted he had "no idea what it is I want to do yet", Wade revealed he would apply the same work ethic to whatever he dabbles in and "strive to be great at something".
The 13-time All-Star said: "I definitely know I want to do a little bit of everything. Especially in the beginning, I want to see what I can be great at.
SEEKING PROFESSIONAL HELP
I was always against someone that don't know me telling me how to live my life or giving me instructions. But I need someone to talk to about it.
DWYANE WADE, Maimi Heat star, on needing therapy when he retires at the end of this season.
"That's what I want to be at whatever else I choose to do. We'll see. It's been surreal. It's like you have this vision of how you want things to go, right? With everything in life.
"And when something, you know, surpasses that vision, it's kinda like it's an out-of-body experience."
But while most basketball romantics are hoping that the 37-year-old can extend his farewell tour into the play-offs, his team's post-season hopes dimmed after they fell to a 111-109 loss at the already eliminated Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday. While Wade led all scorers with 24 points, he could not prevent the visitors from slipping to their third straight defeat.
The ninth-placed Heat have just three games to claw back the one-game advantage of the Detroit Pistons, who hold the East's eighth and final play-off spot.
In Oklahoma City, Russell Westbrook secured his third straight season averaging a triple-double as the Thunder beat the Pistons 123-110 in a contest that was crucial to both teams' play-off hopes.
The All-Star guard, who is the only player to achieve the feat in consecutive seasons, ended with 19 points, eight rebounds and 15 assists as Oklahoma kept hold of seventh place in the West, half a game ahead of the San Antonio Spurs.
AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE, REUTERS