The NBA defending champion Miami Heat opened preseason training camp this weekend as strong betting favorites to win it all again. The Heat is No. 1 in ESPN’s preseason power rankings, and LeBron James, Dwyne Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are first, eighth and 18th, respectively, in the overall ranking of the league’s top players.
Well, this is no fun. The Heat is too good, too perfect. There’s nothing to complain about!
I mean, fans of the last-place Marlins get to watch manager Ozzie Guillen and pitcher Heath Bell embarrassingly bicker publicly about who respects whom less, and prepare to put to bed maybe the most disappointing season in franchise history.
Beleaguered Dolphins fans can rightly complain about this little 40-year pause between Super Bowl winners, or about their team not even winning a single playoff game since 2000.
The NHL lockout means Panthers fans don’t even have a season to disappoint them, let alone that the club last won a playoff series in 1996.
Over on the college side, impatient Hurricanes football fans’ long wait for a return to national relevance is only complicated and imperiled by NCAA issues.
You know what Heat fans have to complain about?
That the championship parade didn’t last long enough! Seriously.
You know what the biggest controversy surrounding the Heat is?
That several really good players won’t get enough minutes because the roster is so deep and talented.
Fans of the Dolphins and Marlins wonder if they’ll ever make the playoffs again.
Heat fans’ only agony is the wait to see whether they’ll face the Lakers or Thunder in the NBA Finals.
We need controversy! Maybe LeBron and D-Wade can fake that they don’t get along. Maybe we can get Ray Allen to complain about not starting. Or perhaps we could plant a rumor that Pat Riley is getting the itch to coach again!
I mean, please. We need a little something — anything — to break up the monotony of relentless success and winning between now and the next tragically short championship parade.
The 39th Ryder Cup — Tiger Woods and the United States against Rory McIlroy and Europe — ends Sunday in Medinah, Ill. Ryder crowds are notoriously rowdy and louder than typical golf galleries. The Ruder Cup.
• First there was the Lingerie Football League. Next: The Bikini Basketball Association, planning for a summer 2013 launch with teams including the “Miami Spice.” Ah, female athletes wearing next to nothing. The framers of Title IX must be so proud!
And in other women’s basketball news, the WNBA playoffs have begun.• Kevin Garnett angrily erased Allen’s phone number after Allen left Boston for the Heat. Not from his iPhone, though. Garnett is so old, he erased the number from his Rolodex.
• The Marlins on Tuesday will give an at-bat to Adam Greenberg, 31, whose career ended in 2005 when he was hit by a pitch on the head in his only big-league plate appearance and suffered from vertigo. Hey, after 17 shutout losses, might as well let anybody who thinks they can hit give it a try. Fans, step right up.
• Remember when no-hitters were rare? The Reds’ Homer Bailey pitched the seventh of the season Friday. Ultimate mocking indignity for batters: Being no-hit by a guy named Homer.
• Former Marlin Miguel Cabrera is chasing baseball’s first Triple Crown since 1967. Carl Yastrzemski’s name hasn’t been uttered (and misspelled) this much in 45 years.
• NASCAR’s third of 10 Chase for the Cup races is Sunday in Dover, Del. Standings are close but Chase is lacking something. Excitement? Controversy? I say we throw a Busch brother in there to rile things up.
• Not much progress to end the NHL lockout and have a hockey season. Seldom has the image of ice slowly melting been a better metaphor.
• Scandal! Hope Solo claims judges, not voters, decide who is eliminated on Dancing With the Stars. Question: Does one have to take something seriously to be outraged?
• You know how Jewish folks fasted 24 hours on Yom Kippur? In my religion, I spent 24 hours eating nonstop.
• Serena Williams’ fourth U.S. Open championship was her 15th major. I’m not sure if she’s the best women’s tennis player ever. But I do think she could beat up all the other ones.
• Gabby Douglas and two other members of the U.S. gold-medal women’s gymnastics team attended a Dodgers game and met Matt Kemp. Based on what I’ve read about Kemp as a ladies man, I trust there was a chaperone?
• A Michigan woman, Linda Chase, 72, watched NASCAR races for two years beside the corpse of a dead friend. Or, put another way, Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby meets Weekend at Bernie’s.
• Parting thought: Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub lost a chunk of one of his earlobes during a game last week. Who knew Mike Tyson had even taken up football?
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