Random Evidence of a Cluttered Blog

Let’s hope Dolphins-Jets game is as spicy as buildup

 

Hot list

Today: Heat opening-night starters. Fifty-four players have had at least one opening-night start (ONS) for Miami in its 24 years. Here are the only ones with five or more entering this season:

Player ONS Span
Dwyane Wade82003-11
Rony Seikaly61988-93
Udonis Haslem 62003-08
Glen Rice51990-94
Tim Hardaway 51996-2000
Alonzo Mourning51995-2001
Eddie Jones52000-04

Note: Brian Grant and Shaquille O’Neal are only ones with four. Nine players have three.


What South Florida sports fans are talking about:

1. HEAT

Defending NBA champs raise banner, open vs. Celtics in two days: Favorites again, Miami begins the new season Tuesday in the bayside arena. Last time the Heat opened a season as defending champion, in 2006, it started with a deflating 108-66 opening-light loss. Um, when Heat fans speak of wanting to repeat, that isn’t what they mean!

2. DOLPHINS

Fins take two-game win streak on road to face Jets: If the 3-3 Dolphins win again Sunday, it would be the first time Miami has been above .500 after seven games since 2010. Wait, that’s it? Rats, I thought it would be the first time in a long time, which would have been more interesting. What a letdown! Let’s move on to the next item, please.

3. MARLINS

Team fires Ozzie Guillen as manager merry-go-round spins anew: Team traded Heath Bell then canned Guillen after just one year. Fans seemed torn on the firing. (Cannot confirm Fidel Castro condemned it.) Club president David Samson said baseball-ops boss Larry Beinfest would be retained, and nobody could decide if that was good news.

4. BASEBALL

Tigers seek history-defying World Series comeback vs. Giants: With Game 4 on Sunday in Detroit, the Tigers are trying to buck history. Teams down 2-0 in a World Series have won only 11 of 52 times (one of the past 15, none in the past eight). By the way, is it just me, or are half of the players either unusually fat or wearing ridiculous beards?

5. HURRICANES

UM hopes to shed losing streak, readies for Virginia Tech: Off Saturday with Virginia Tech here Thursday, UM was seeking to end a three-game skid including a loss to FSU. After that, a player’s father went on local radio to blast coach Al Golden and controversy arose over whether another UM player had quit or been dismissed. Otherwise, all’s well!

gcote@miamiherald.com

The champion, state-of-the-art Heat will own this town’s attention again soon enough, like, in two days, but before we get to the sublime, let’s deal with the ridiculous — the buildup to Sunday’s Dolphins game at the Stinkin’ Jets.

The idea that one coach’s benign comment about “hot sauce” might cause barbs to be lobbed up and down the Atlantic seaboard and continue more than a month later is, well, a bit absurd. I mean, what were the odds “hot sauce” would be a phrase you’d even hear from a coach? That’s about as likely as one presidential candidate saying “binders full of women” and the other saying “horses and bayonets.”

Jets coach Rex Ryan said his defenders would put the “hot sauce” on Reggie Bush before the last game and Bush left with a knee injury. Later in the game, Jets star cornerback Darrelle Revis was lost to a season-ending injury and Bush said, “What goes around comes around.”

This week, Ryan called on Bush to apologize (Bush hasn’t), and Jet Antonio Cromartie called Bush’s comments “unprofessional” and “not showing any kind of sportsmanship.”

Jets linebacker Aaron Maybin said of Bush, “We want to knock him out” Sunday — to which Dolphins center Mike Pouncey called Maybin “a joke” and — accurately — “one of the biggest draft busts in NFL history.” (Better start calling him Mike Pouncing!)

Here’s hoping the excitement of the game lives up to the endearingly goofy buildup.

Quick postscript: Jets quarterbacks Tim Tebow and Mark Sanchez finished 1-2 in a Sports Illustrated players poll on the NFL’s most overrated players. Or, did that go without saying?

• Disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong officially was stripped of his seven Tour de France victories. However, he does get to keep his seven Tour de Fraud titles.

• Former Marlins catcher Mike Redmond, 41, is reported to be the favorite to replace Ozzie Guillen and become the team’s next manager. He must be serious, too. I hear he is already preparing a statement to have handy for when he is fired prematurely by owner Jeffrey Loria.

• Have you noticed on TV the fan sitting behind home plate during this World Series wearing the bright orange Marlins jersey? He turns out to be Miamian and season-ticket holder Laurence Leavy, 52. Alas, that’s as close as the Marlins came to making the World Series in 2012.

• I rechecked the preseason predictions of ESPN’s panel of 50 “baseball experts” and here is how many of them predicted a Tigers-Giants World Series: Zero. Proving again that TV — neither watching it nor appearing on it — makes you smarter.

• Gators tried to protect their No. 2 BCS ranking Saturday against Georgia in Jacksonville. It’s so cute they call that game “The World’s Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party.” Doesn’t that pretty much describe anyplace where college students are tailgating?

• Bad news for FIU football this week when the Sun Belt Conference denied coach Mario Cristobal’s request to start the season all over again.

•  Barack Obama called to congratulate the Indiana Fever for their WNBA championship, even though Indiana is not a swing state.

• The NHL canceled all games through Nov. 30 as the lockout droned into its eighth week. The good news? It isn’t often the Panthers can say they are tied for the best record in hockey heading into November.

• Olympic hurdler Lolo Jones was named to the U.S. bobsled team, because that’s how desperate bobsledding is for publicity.

• The five-day 53rd Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show wraps up Monday at six locations. I guess it isn’t a bad economy for everybody!

• NBA commissioner David Stern announced he would retire on Feb. 1, 2014. Hey, keep us posted, Dave! What’s he want, a 15-month farewell tour?

•  Stephen A. Smith appeared to quickly and barely audibly use the N-word on ESPN’s First Take on Thursday. Lots of people were upset, but it turned out all of them were old, white newspaper columnists.

• NFL is investigating whether Chargers players used Stickum, banned in 1981. Um, San Diego is 3-3 with two consecutive losses. If they are using Stickum, they’re not using nearly enough of it.

• Game officials will throw pink penalty flags at Sunday’s Dolphins-Jets game in honor of breast-cancer awareness month. Great cause, but enough with the pink already!

• Ex-Dolphin Channing Crowder said on WQAM he has seen Olympic swim stars Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte smoke pot. Careful, Channing. You know the dangers of second-hand smoke!

• An upcoming Don King-promoted boxing card is being moved from Miami Jai-Alai to the larger Gulfstream Park to accommodate King’s hair.

Man bites dog! Last week’s LPGA tournament was not – repeat NOT – won by a South Korean.

Lawrence Taylor said this week he still pays for prostitutes, which might not be so bad if he weren’t on probation for hiring an underage hooker. Can we all agree the first letter in L.T. stands for Loser?

•  Parting thought: Yankees boss Hank Steinbrenner defended Alex Rodriguez, saying he has been blamed “for everything but the Kennedy assassination.” Not so fast, Hank. A new analysis of the Zapruder film appears to show a lurking A-Rod on the grassy knoll.

Visit Greg’s Random Evidence of a Cluttered Blog daily at MiamiHerald.com, watch video at YouTube/TheGregCote and follow on Twitter @gregcote.

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