In My Opinion

Heat needs anger, doubt; so here is some for team


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Today: Dolphins and Hurricanes both in football postseason. As Dolphins fight for playoff spot and Canes await bowl invitation, we consider there have been only 11 times when UM played in a bowl and Miami made the NFL playoffs the same season. The only four times both won in the same postseason:

Season Dolphins Hurricanes
2000Beat Colts 23-17 Beat Florida 37-20 (Sugar)
1999Beat Seahawks 20-17 Beat Georgia Tech 28-13 (Gator)
1998Beat Bills 24-17 Beat N.C. State 46-23 (Micron PC)
1990Beat Chiefs 17-16Beat Texas 46-3 (Cotton)

Note: Others seasons when both made postseason were 1983, 1984, 1985, 1992, 1994, 2001 and 2008.

What South Florida sports fans are talking about:

1. DOLPHINS: Playoff-seeking Miami visits frigid Pittsburgh: After a 23-3 win at the Jets, Miami is 6-6 and after its first two-game win streak since the 3-0 start. But the Dolphins face a tough task on the road as Mike Wallace returns to face Pittsburgh and its famous “12th man.” I don’t mean noise from the Steelers crowd. I mean coach Mike Tomlin intentional tripping somebody.

2. HEAT: Champs at Indiana Tuesday in Eastern heavyweight bout: Miami recently won 10 games in a row. Didn’t matter. Then the Heat lost badly twice in a row. Didn’t matter. Now, Tuesday, the Heat visits Indiana for its first season meeting with the rival it expects to face in the Eastern finals. but trust your gut. It matters.

3. SOCCER: United States draws ‘Group of Death’ for 2014 World Cup: The U.S. finds itself in Group G with world No. 2-ranked Germany, No. 5 Portugal and Ghana, which eliminated the Americans in 2010. “It couldn’t get any more difficult,” lamented U.S. coach Jurgen Klinsmann. Oops. Yes it could. FIFA just ruled that Team USA must play in dress shoes, and with no goalkeeper.

4. COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Canes await bowl fate as conference titles decided: Saturday title games included FSU vs. Duke in the ACC. (You know in the Bible about the meek inheriting the Earth? God meant Duke in a football championship). Miami expected to play either Johnny Manziel’s Texas A&M or Teddy Bridgewater’s Louisville in a bowl. Either way, Canes, pack a pass defense.

5. BASEBALL: Marlins not left out as teams wheel ‘n deal: Robinson Cano jumped from Yankees to Mariners and Jacoby Ellsbury from Red Sox to Yanks in the two biggest deals as MLB free agency opened. Marlins were active, too, with three signings led by former Boston catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who last year ranked among league leaders in most letters.

The Big 3-era Heat have always seemed to do best when hated, doubted or angry, and I believe it might be time to sow some of that controversy and discontent for the good of the team. It seems added motivation might be needed.

Miami already had lost five games — including two in a row entering the weekend — all five to teams with losing records. Narrow escapes against dregs like Orlando and Charlotte have hardly instilled confidence in a three-peat, either.

Now the team reportedly is shopping for a trade for backcourt help as Dwyane Wade continues to battle creaky knees.

Genuine panic is a ways off. Actually, Tuesday, if the Heat lose at Indiana. Until then, let’s manufacture some to give this team a spark. Here’s a six-pack:

1. Hey, Heat, you’re distracted. Wade is involved in a Fox sitcom based on his life as a single dad. LeBron James and comedian Kevin Hart are making a basketball bro-film called “Ballers.” You may need a new agent, Chris Bosh. What, no movie scripts? Dear Fellas, feel free to concentrate on basketball and treat it like a fulltime bleepin’ job!

2. Did I mention that Wade has a new line of designer men’s socks and that LeBron is in talks to join David Beckham and bring pro soccer to Miami? Be thankful at least the guys aren’t carrying cell phones and taking business calls during games. Yet.

3. Hey, Heat, how lazy or disinterested does a team have to be for its starters to get out-rebounded by the other team, 37-9? Rhetorical question. It happened to Miami on Thursday against Chicago.

4. Hey, D-Wade, you’re a month from turning 32. Although the ways things are going with taking nights off to rest your knees, I’m not sure if 32 is an age or a projected number of regular-season games played.

5. Hey, I thought I just saw Pat Riley discreetly remove his old coaching whistle from mothballs and caress it lovingly.

6. Heat, your reserves say they could make the playoffs — that Miami in effect has two playoff teams. How ‘bout you go show us Tuesday at Indiana that you still have one team that can win another championship?

OK, hopefully we’ve annoyed or angered Heat players a bit, as a public service.

You’re welcome.

• Helpful holiday hint: If you have already finished your Christmas shopping, keep it to yourself. People hate people like you. That reminds me. All I want for Christmas is a photo of Nick Saban’s face as that Auburn game ended.

•  Jim Larranaga’s Hurricane men (5-4) open ACC basketball play Sunday here vs. Virginia Tech. Um, Shane Larkin isn’t playing much for the Dallas Mavericks. Could the Canes borrow him back for the day?

• Dolphins coach Joe Philbin had GPS tracking devices fitted on practice jerseys to monitor players’ activity. What he needs more is a GPS on Steelers receiver Antonio Brown to keep track of HIM Sunday.

• It’s taking the NFL forever to conclude its Dolphins Bullygate probe and make findings public, the delay suggesting seeming indecision. Who’s running this investigation, Brett Favre?

• The state decided to not pursue sexual-assault charges against FSU quarterback Jameis Winston, despite desperate arguments by lawyers from teams that could yet face the Noles for the national title.

• Delta stranded 50 passengers so the Florida Gators could make it to a game at UConn. Bulletin to Delta: Your paying customers are more important than a game.

• They say Americans only love winners. Oh yeah? Then why did Dale Earnhardt Jr. just win his 11th NASCAR favorite-driver award?

•  Kobe Bryant said on his Facebook page he would return from his Achilles’ injury and play Sunday. I wonder if, as a courtesy, he also informed Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni?

•  LeBron James treated his team to Thanksgiving dinner at his 30,000-square foot mansion just outside Akron, Ohio. I don’t wanna say the affair was extravagant, but the catered banquet arrived by Mayflower. Not the moving van. The original one.

• Cavaliers fans mounting a “Come Home LeBron” campaign handed out thousands of T-shirts for Heat’s game in Cleveland. Wonder if those were the same fans burning his jersey three summers ago?

• NBA fined coach Jason Kidd $50,000 for intentionally spilling a drink on the court to delay a game. If not for the DUI bust and the Nets’ 5-14 record, it might be the worst thing to happen to Jason lately.

• The Knicks’ Metta World Peace and Kenyon Martin got into a “heated argument” over whether elbow macaroni or shell pasta was better. Headline: ‘World Peace Threatened By Noodles.’

• Bulls star Derrick Rose out injured for second straight season. “What is it about us Roses and misfortune?” said Pete Rose.

• GQ magazine named Dennis Rodman the “least influential person” of 2013. Damn. Thought I had a shot at that!

•  Manny Pacquiao returned to the ring for first time in two years with decisive win over Brandon Rios. Pacquiao’s next thoroughly under-qualified opponent is yet to be determined.

•  Parting thought: The FIU football team quietly fell to 1-12 Saturday after losing to the offseason, 41-6.

Visit Greg’s Random Evidence of a Cluttered Blog daily at and follow on Twitter @gregcote, Instagram/upsetbird, Vine/Greg Cote and Facebook/Greg Cote.

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