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NBA legend accused of exploiting trans daughter ‘for financial gain’ — RT Sport News

Dwyane Wade was accused by his ex-wife of pressuring their daughter to change her name and gender

Miami Heat and NBA legend Dwyane Wade is exploiting his 15-year-old trans daughter Zaya’s gender identity for profit, according to the former basketball player’s ex-wife, Siohvaugn Funches-Wade.

Wade first revealed that Zaya was “ready to live [her] truth” when he and his now wife Gabrielle Union appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in February 2020. 

Zaya has known her true gender identity since she was three, Wayne alleges. But the 40-year-old is exploiting the topic for his own financial gain and has also pressured their daughter “to move forward with the name and gender change in order to capitalize on the financial opportunities that he has received from companies,” says Funches-Wade.

Funches-Wade outlined her concerns when objecting to Wade’s petition to legally change Zaya’s name in court documents obtained by Page Six, where she refers to her child by her former name, Zion.

Wade’s ex-wife, 41, alleges that he “is positioned to profit from the minor child’s name and gender change with various companies through contacts and marketing opportunities including but not limited to deals with Disney.”

She claims that during a meeting with him in Atlanta in April, Wade told her how “a lot of money had been already made” with regards to Zaya’s “name and gender issue.”

“[Wade] told me that he intended to make our child very famous due to the name and gender issue and also informed me that there would be endorsements/contracts associated therewith,” Funches-Wade adds.

Wade’s ex-wife also fears that due to Zaya’s case being highly publicized, “there will likely be media pressure on the minor child.” 

Instead of making these big decisions now, she would like Zaya to decide for herself when she is “at the age of majority” two years from now. 

Wade used Instagram to respond to what he calls “damaging lies” from Funches-Wade and said he is not “surprised” by the “attempt to fight Zaya’s identity” and “drag [his] name through the mud.”

“I’m very disappointed that she continuously finds ways of centering herself and HER needs, without regard to her children,” Wade wrote.

“I’ve given her the opportunity to reach out to Zaya’s teachers, doctors, and therapist over the years and even meet her friends, so she could get her own understanding of our child’s needs for her LIFE!”

“She won’t do it!” the former Miami Heat player claimed, before calling Funches-Wade, an “absent parent” who professes she is a “good Christian mother” but hasn’t attended a single “recital, graduation, school dance, play date, practice, parent-teacher conference etc” in Zaya’s journey.


Wade stressed that he and Union would never “force Zaya or any of [their] children to do anything against their will, much less force an identity on them,” but will not “sit on his hands” after Funches-Wade’s accusations. 

“The high road has run out of real estate,” he added, saying that his lawyer “will be in contact.”

Wade also praised Zaya as a top student who has maintained high grades “while navigating all this unsolicited and harmful attention and debates about her gender and sexuality from those who are committed to not listening to her, much less even knowing her.”

Wade has been retired since 2019, when he ended a 16-year career defined by three NBA Championships from 2006 to 2013 with the Heat.

He made an estimated $199 million in his playing days. He has a 20-year-old son, Zaire, with Fuches-Wade, plus daughter Kaavia, 3, with Union and another son, Xavier, 8, with Aja Metoyer.

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