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May 06, 2014

G1: Heat 107, Brooklyn 86: LeBron's 22, big 3rd quarter lift Miami in series opener; plus Heat 3 Stars named, LBJ routed in MVP, miracle Marlins & more

It's Radio Wednesday: I'm in-studio with Dan Le Batard Show today, 3-7 p.m. on 790 & 104.3 The Ticket, 4-7 on ESPN Radio. Ears welcome.

1) It is WEDNESDAY, MAY 7. In The Previous Blogpost (ITPB): Heat-Nets preview and series poll, LeBron overload, Seantrel, LeBapod, peanut shell art, Crocodile Chop & more. 2) Join us Twitter @gregcote.

Durant routs LeBron in MVP: Kevin Durant ended the two-year MVP reign of LeBron James in voting announced yesterday. No surprise. But the margin perhaps was. Durant had 119 first-place votes to James' six.

G1: HEAT 107, BROOKLYN 86: LEBRON, ALLEN LEAD BALANCED MIAMI ATTACK: [Click on Miami's Time for my column off last night's Heat win. It isn't the regular season any more, Brooklyn]. LeBron James led the way with 22 points but Ray Allen's 19 off the bench were just as big last night in Miami's 107-86 win. Chris Bosh also came up big with 15 points, 11 rebounds and a particular spark in the third quarter, when Miami's 33 points busted open a tight game. So much for Brooklyn's 4-0 season record against Miami, by the way. See our Heat 3 Stars of game below. Original post: You thought it started with the regular season? It didn't. You thought it started with the first round of the playoffs? It didn't. The Heat's run for
1aa1ag1 1aa1brookmiaa three-peat begins tonight, for real, for all intent and purposes. The regular season was an elongated walk-through.
1aa1round2The first-round playoff sweep over Charlotte was perfunctory and drama
free. Now it begins! Real playoff ambience and intensity will visit the downtown bayside arena for the first time in this postseason tonight in Game 1 of Heat-Nets. Brooklyn brings personalities, including

1aa1lebronpierceformer Celtics thorns Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett. Brooklyn brings starpower. Brooklyn also brings a team capable of beating Miami based on that 4-0 season mark favoring the Nets. Granted, three games were decided by 1 point and the other in double-overtime. Still, 4-0 is 4-0, although I suspect that as much as anything fuels the Heat here. If 4-0 makes Nets overconfident or invites doubt about Heat, well, that is what LeBron James and company feed on. The first quarter tonight should be especially torqued up tonight as the Heat fight off the natural rust of too much rest and try to make an early statement. Can't wait! My series pick: Heat in 5.

Poll result: You say Heat in 6: We asked for your prediction and most, 41.4 percent, said Heat in 6 games, edging the 37.3% who said Heat in 5. A Heat sweep drew 7.3% and Heat in seven drew 5.5%. Remaining 8.5% have Brooklyn in an upset. Interesting to contrast this round and last. With Brooklyn only 44.6% say Heat in any easy series (4 or 5 games). Versus Charlotte the easy-series factor was 87.1%.

Heat Postseason MVP Standings: Last night in Game 1--1. Ray Allen; 2. LeBron James; 3. Chris Bosh. Overall through five playoff games: LeBron James 13 points, Dwyane Wade 6, Chris Bosh 5, Ray Allen 3, Chris Andersen 1, Norris Cole 1, James Jones 1. (We name 'Heat 3 Stars' after every game and award points on 3-2-1 basis).

ON THE MARLINS' STREAK: Marlins on a nice little 7-1 after last night's win, now a nifty 16-5 at home and only a half-game back in the NL East. Miami's plus-28 run differential, fifth best in MLB, suggests a real-deal contender. Perspective, though: These kind of little streaks happen every year, even in down years. Marlins were 6-1 from June 23-July 1 in 2013; 7-0 from May 1-7 in 2012; 7-1 from April 13-22 in 2011; 9-1 from July 6-18 in 2011; and 6-1 from May 10-16 in 2010. The key is to avoid the comparable slumps such as the 8-game losing streak just a month ago, April 6-14.  

MOUNTAIN DEW'S MUSIC RIPOFF: The sound of the Mountain Dew TV commercial entitled "Kickstart Your Night" currently airing is suspiciously derivative of Jack White. It's a song called "Repetition" by a group called The Willowz, but the vocal and music are such a Jack ripoff it ain't funny. Aside to Third Man Records: This is why lawyers were invented.

1aa1cowellcatDEAR GREG...:
"...Your blog's OK but would be better if occasionally you would show what would happen if X Factor judge Simon Cowell were a large house cat. Thank you." Dear Reader: Let me see what I can do.

Click back often. We frequently update and add to these latest blogposts, which are needy in that way...


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PP and KG 5 years ago edition would have a chance. This version won't. Good on them for continuing to fight though fu*k the Heat.

Brooklyn's going to go all out tonight to try to steal home court from a team that hasn't played in a week. They're built for long possessions, stout defense, and executing down the stretch.

If Miami can get out and run they'll blow Brooklyn off the court. If it comes down to swapping possessions at the end of the game it's a 50-50 proposition. Miami lost three games to Brooklyn by a single point, getting out-executed at the end. They lost the fourth in double overtime. They could still win playing Brooklyn's pace but why risk it?

Just get O-linemen, Runningbacks & Fullbacks in this years draft...

Dumb da dumb dumb-dumbbbbbbbbbb!!!!

Dukey, this video is for you, son.

And Krupps thought that their 88's had a flat trajectory. He he. Now this is one bad ass mofo.


BB...easy son, the drama queen and his side kick don't play for the C's no moe...

OK draft talk..Peter King just did his first and only mock draft and he is picking the Bama tackle for us at 19th passing on CJ Mosley..you guys ok with that?..I must say I rather have the MLB.

You're right if they did it would be a closer series. Still rooting for them regardless hope Pierce drops 30 on your asses tonight.

No. We need offensive linemen, lots of them. Although if fat albert comes in and plays well, and the new GM convinces Jew Boy McCoy to bring back Richie Incog, and we throw down big time in the first round and select the best available O linemen when we have our first chance to get new beef, our o-line might just be respectable. Linebackers are a dime a dozen, hell, we just took one with our first frigging pick last year!

Nah, we need the big ugglys. Like someone said earlier oline and running backs should be the first order of business. We led the league in QB sacks allowed and our running game was horse hack.


If there is one lesson Boston fans have learned about former Celtics Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett over the past few years, it's to never count the duo out.

One would figure that lesson is something long-time rivals like the Miami Heat would be wise enough to realize about the pair. Dwayne Wade proved that wasn't the case yesterday. The Heat guard admitted to thinking he would never have to face Pierce and Garnett again in the postseason yesterday as he held court with reporters in Miami.

"No," Wade responded when asked if he thought he would see Pierce and Garnett again. "We thought when we played them in Boston, we buried them."

Wade's sentiments make some sense on the surface. After defeating the Celtics in a hard-fought seven-game series back in 2012, Miami signed away Ray Allen in free agency that summer, taking away one of Boston's most valuable offensive weapons.

After Rajon Rondo's ACL tear sidetracked any chance of a potential postseason rematch between Miami and Boston last season, the rivalry appeared to be dead. Pierce and Garnett would seemingly never get a chance for revenge against Allen after he abandoned ship.

Thankfully, Danny Ainge did well for all parties involved when dealing away the franchise legends last summer. Not only did he secure a great return for the Celtics, he also ensured the possibility that this day might come for Garnett and Pierce together.

The pair deserved one more chance at the Heat, one more chance to avenge Allen's departure, and an opportunity prove to the world they still have something left in the tank and weren't dead at all.

In the midst of a tough rebuilding season, this is the scenario that Boston fans have been quietly rooting for all year. Even Heat coach Erik Spoelstra knows where the loyalties of both players lie.

Starting tonight, Pierce and Garnett get one final shot to show Wade and the Heat they are still alive and kicking. You can bet Celtic fans will relish seeing them have that opportunity.

I will relish it indeed.

ok now the Palm Beach post also picked the Bama tackle to us at 19th..hhmmm, interesting.

Heat in 5. Ray Allen hits a 3 at the buzzer to close out the series.

ok...here's my mock draft...

2-Rams- Manziel
4-Browns-Khalil Mack
5-Raiders-G Robinson
7-Bucs-S Watkins
8-Vikings-CJ Mosley
9-Bills-T Lewan
10-Lions-Justin Gilbert
11-Titans-A Barr
12-Giants-Z Martin
14-Bears-Aaron Donald
15-Steelers-Darqueze Dennard
17-Ravens-Calvin Prior
18-Jets-Brandin Cooks
19-Dolphins-Odell Beckham

let's see how many I'll get right, Macshay only got two right last year (same player and team) and Kiper only got one..

This is not the regular season as the Nets will soon find out. I predict 5 games max with the Heat winning easily

I just don't see two out of the four top tiered QBs off the board so early. Jacksonville is not going to pass on Khalil Mack. And the Browns are not passing on Wadkins either. Especially when Cleveland has 10 picks, five in the first three rounds.

The Texans have 11 picks, and along with the Brownies they will try to use some of them as capital to fill no less than three quality needs.

The interesting thing to me is that Jacksonville is sitting there at #3, and assuming they do pick Mack, they do not pick again until #39. Can you say - bye-bye QB? Chad Henne for another season?!!!

I would love to offer the Dolphins' #19 to the Jags (875 points) in exchange for their #39 (510), #70 (240), and #105 (85). This way the Jags get to pick ahead of both Arizona and Cleveland. Teams who will almost certainly pick Carr and Bridgewater ahead of the Jaguar's existing second pick.

Here's my draft:

#39 (from Jags) OT Moses, Kouandjio or James, whoever the team likes best.
#50 WR Donte Moncrief
#70 (Jags) OG Gabe Jackson
#81 RB Terrance West
#105 (Jags) TE C.J. Fiedorowicz
#116 ILB Shane Skov
#155 OG David Yankey or OT/OG Justin Britt
#190 SS Ahmad Dixon
#234 DT jay Bromley

Now that's a piece of hardware, Mr. Woodcock. That railgun is getting installed on my Iowa Class Battleship. One bow and one stern. Even if they have to be downsized in order to keep my 16" main guns...


What's wrong with you, BB? Now you're rooting for a freaking Rusky! How can you root for a team owned by a freakin' commie? Not me, I'd rather root for a racist's team than a freakin' commie. I hope the Heat drop 165 on their ass tonight.

Jacksonville would be insane to roll with Chad Henne again just insane.

OC..My thinking on Manziel is the Rams are not going to resign Bradford again and they need a replacement, Manziel is a stud as for the Jags?..they have to get a QB and this kid Bortles can play..I do agree that there are quite a few other more talented players on the board but QB's get picked earlier than any other position..

your scenario is interesting, if we can find a trade partner liek the Jags or Texans and we can get good value we should go for it.

Betting odds on where Manziel goes in the draft


The wise guys are betting it's round 5 or earlier. Under 5.5 is -260 which means you have to bet $26 to win $10. Over 5.5 is +180 which means you win $18 on a $10 bet.

I think the wise guys have it right. They usually do.

Affair? I thought Clinton came on her dress whilst she blew him from under his desk. End of story...


more revisionist history from tom.
i never said we had pro bowl talent at every position on the line.
martin, lost it, clabo got worse before getting better, (he was a pro bowler the year before), and thomas didn't make the line up, although brenner did. he drafted 4 tight ends and signed 3 linemen in 2 years.

if his coach knew what he was doing, the martin fiasco would've never left the locker room, ritchie would've still been starting, along with mckinnie, and that would've been better.
of course, if we ran the ball as much as the pats, seahawks, broncos, and every other good team, we would've won 2 more games..

ah... baby..
mr. "the heat are 1 and done"!
the cool thing about miami winning it all again this year will be no one will call the celtics the last team to make it 4 times in a row, and after NEXT year, we'll have that distinction to ourselves with 5..
good luck rooting for the nets! hahahahaha..

"avenge Allen's departure"??
maybe if that idiot ainge didn't have the all time leading 3 point shooter IN HISTORY on the trading block every year, you idiot celtic fans wouldn't need "revenge"..lol
you want revenge? try being loyal to your players, like miami is.
and fire that crybaby ainge..

Terrence West? Adam West might be a better pick! Terrence West? WTF?

Well Tom, I sure hope that you and FZB are correct and a run on QBs occurs at the start of the evening. It will translate to players who otherwise would have been picked earlier slipping down the draft. If all four or five go early Miami will not have to settle for a reach at #19.

Terrence West? WTF? Who dat!

Maybe we should take a punter with the fifth pick this year.......

He's one of the RBs the team brought in to check out. They like him and his ability to catch short passes on flare outs.

They are on the clock: - 51:50

Now I'm not suggesting a run on QBs. My guess is two get selected before Miami picks at 19, Manziel and Bortles. But I agree it would be nice if Bridgewater and Carr goes before Miami picks. If this shakes out the way I see it Miami is going to have limited options at #19. Trading up a few spots to get the OT they want or trading out of the first round might end up being the best options.

Yea, they also drafted a freaking kicker last year with a fifth round pick and wasted another draft pick on a former parking lot attendant that somehow got on the field up at Gaysville and ran the ball from time to time. At Miami that stiff has a better chance of catching pneumonia in Miami in August than contributing to the team. Last year's Dolphins' draft is going down as one of the worst since Jimmy Johnson's infamous passing on Randy Moss to take a RB that was slower, smaller, and an even bigger stiff than the stiff that we picked last year from the Gayturds.

You want the Fish to draft a running back they should draft Storm "Freaking" Johnson who the Canes amazingly let go because they preferred another Johnson who was smaller, slower, couldn't block worth jack, and was the paper mache guy. How anyone can trade a 235 pound missile like Storm Johnson for that little scat back that we have in Coral Gables is one of the great mysteries of all time right up there with what came first the chicken or the egg.

All Storm did for Central Florida was run them to an easy victory in the Fiesta Bowl last year. But we didn't need Storm Johnson we are the Canes and we don't need no stinkin' talent!

Oh boy.

Oye Wood's...que te pasa bro?... You're getting cranky in your old age .

There is a possibility Bridgewater gets drafted in the first round but I don't think there is any doubt that Carr does...there are quite a few teams that love the guy...Raiders, Browns, Patriots, Texans and Vikings to name a few.

Hopefully we can find a trade partner so we can trade back..

Woodster arrested with his main squeeze catching some afternoon delight on the lawn of a Catholic church.


Sorry, FZ, but your former son's last draft while he was still employed in the 305 has to go down as the equivalent of stepping on fresh dog shit as you get out of your car for a date. You better hope that Jordan and the Jordonaires from last year's disaster somehow got sprinkled by pixie dust at Disney World and make a magical turnaround this year. A kicker in the fifth round? Not even if he was Lou "Focking" Groza.

"Woodcock, we can afford to take a kicker in the fifth round......" Yea, sure, sure, OC, of course we can, after all we're loaded and we've made the playoffs ten years straight.......NOT!

This year's draft is penciling out to be one of the weakest in memory. You have to go back to when Saban drafted LSU's Brown to find a draft a bereft of talent as this one. Even the top five guys aren't "can't miss." Miami would do well in trading down with anyone who is dumb enough to think that there's a pot of gold in the 19th pick of this draft. Maybe the Raiders or the Redskins will come a calling.

Woodster arrested for getting himself a little afternoon delight on a church lawn.


Tonight's Heat game just goes to show the regular season in the NBA means NOTHING. This series goes 5 games because the Heat will take one night off for a rest.

Big Ben prefers Bortles to Manziel. Of course he does. Bortles is not much of a threat. On the other hand, when Manziel goes to Cleveland he is going to be kicking Ben's a$$ regularly.

Nice Win for heat as well as few minutes for Wade and others. Oe more ass whooping and this is over. Bring on the Wizards!

Tom, I find it humorous. The two of us agree I so much, but for quarterbacks. It is my honest belief that Johnny Manziel, though loaded with chutzpah, will not be successful beyond short-term.

Spud Webb had some serious NBA game, but there's a reason why under 5' types register "small" numbers.

wow.. i thought for sure the heat were in trouble tonight, huh?
after all, brooklyn beat us 4 TIMES in the regular season, right?
we were gonna come out rusty, etc.
idiots.. lol

"Brooklyn's going to go all out tonight to try to steal home court from a team that hasn't played in a week. They're built for long possessions, stout defense, and executing down the stretch."

oh yeah? so is miami.
we're built for something else, too.
winning championships!
5 down, 11 more wins to go..

Funny how Brooklyn brought in Pearce and Garrnet to challenge Miami...
Did'nt work in Boston,wont work in Brooklyn......Heat in 5 maybe 6............

Hahahahaha what a beat down!!!!!!!!

Preach on,david in LA!!!! Nice to hear from someone who actually knows basketball...

aside from baby, (and sometimes OC), most folks here either like the heat, or understand what's going on here.
the BS narrative about this team is as comical a one as i've ever heard.
riley out-rileyed everyone, and people cannot stand it. he got lebron james, the greatest basketball player on the planet, (and when it's done arguably the greatest ever), to buy in to the heat's culture.
and his system and legacy is forever secured with a coach he groomed for 13 years to succeed him.
this was never about winning a couple of titles.
this was meant to bring an old school dynasty back in full force, and create a team and a run that will be among the greatest in history.
one and done my a$%.
baby, you are in for a really painful basketball experience, like i told you 3 years ago when you didn't believe me.
now, just witness..

Yes, perfectly stated...

OC I assume you really meant under "6'" types. Manziel is 71 3/4" according to the combine measurement. 1/4" under 6'

Here are a few QBs about the same height who have had some success in the NFL

Drew Brees 73"
Russell Wilson 71"
Len Dawson 72"
Joe Theismann 72"
Michael Vick 73"
Billy Kilmer 72"
Doug Flutie 70"
Pat Haden 71"
Fran Tarkenton 72"
Jim McMahon 73"
Dave Krieg 73"
Sunny Jergensen 71"
Y.A. Tittle 72"

At the end of the day, height helps but game matters more and Manziel, like Brees, Tarkenton, Theisman, Dawson and others listed, here has GAME.

OC, when did you "Call" it for the Clippers to win this year's NBA championship? According to OC his ouija board has the Clips going all the way. Poor Clippers not only do they have to overcome the Donald and the tough western conference draw but now in addition they have to overcome OC's prediction. Oh boy, it looks like CP3 is screwed.

Wassup, OC!

Buttafuckstein, you have your head so far up your ass a derrick couldn't extract it.

Hey dave, remember that strike the Heat's second year? Remember the resolution? Remember the timeline of new taxes? Remember why Micky Arison voted to keep the strike going rather than accept those terms? Anyone who thinks they know who Miami will have on the roster next season is a fool.

Brave, leave Dave alone he's been in line all night to get a glimpse of Obama when the motorcade drives by the Fairfax District to take him to another fund raiser in Beverly Hills today.

Wassup, Dave!

Here you go, Buttafuckstein, if there was ever an ass clown that needed brain exercises it's you.

You're welcome, ass wipe.


You're such a dork.The worst kind of dork:the kind who thinks he is cool and funny but really is just a dork.


See, Buttafuckstein, those brain exercises are already paying off for you. Now try to repeat this 100 times until your job interview with Mickey Ds. "Welcome to McDonald's sir. May I take your order.

Gee, Buttafuckstein, you're the perfect birthday present for me, a fresh canvas to draw magnificent commentary on. And I was starting to think that moron Kazaam would never come back but who needs him when I have another complete ass wipe like you to wipe every day.

Thank you son, you have made my day.

Day One Dolphins' Draft Operating Manual

1. TE Eric Ebron. If gone;
2. OT Taylor Lewan, if gone;
3. ILB C.J. Mosley, if gone;
4. OT/G Zack Martin, if gone;
5. Trade back (see link)


If no one wants to trade;
6. WR Marqise Lee


I like the players but I think the order ignores our needs....kind of like Ireland last year. Sorry I know that was really mean.

My re-order

1. OT Taylor Lewan, if gone;
2. OT/G Zack Martin, if gone;
3. ILB C.J. Mosley, if gone;
4. TE Eric Ebron. If gone;
5. Trade up to grab one of these (if cost reasonable) or trade back

Happy 86th Birthday,Dork!!!!!

(wow,ass wipe huh?that's a new one...never heard that around here before)

Now go take a nap old man...your jokes are as tired as you...

Not ignoring the team's need, Tom, I just think that if all the first tiered OT prospects are gone by #19, that there are plenty second tiered they can draft well into the third round.

It's about value.

I get you I guess I just disagree that Lewan and Martin are 2nd tier prospects. I think both will be perfect RT fits for our OL.

That said, I hope Manziel drops into our lap.

No, you're correct. Lewan and Martin are both top tiered. What I'm saying is that if all are gone and their choices are Kouandjio, James, Moses, Su'afilo and Bitonio, that they could find one of those cats, even 10 picks later.

...and trading up, even just two spots, for instance, and to spite the Jets would cost them their fourth round pick in value. There better be a sure thing, can't miss guy there within reach.

Mr. Woodcock, here's your B-day present. A little late but better than never...


Buttafuckstein! LOL

Where do you come up with these names.

XXX, Woods and I have been training "wipes," as we've called them, for over 40 years. One gets pretty creative or gets "wiped."

Posted by: XXX | May 07, 2014 at 12:57 PM

Is there anything sadder than an old man laughing at his own lame joke?

Make that-Trading


computer needed fixing so it is in the shop. our pal FZB has the rams taking johnny manziel- don't they already haVE A "FRANCHISE" qb in sam bradford

Buddy Buttafuckstein! Say, Buttafuckstein, are you related to the Bumfuck Buttafucksteins of West Virginia or the West Hollywood Swish Alps Buttafucksteins? Is that smoke coming out of your asshole again, Buttafuckstein?

"Will Buddy Buttafuckstein please return the blow up doll to the lab they need it for the 2:00 o'clock demonstration. Dr. Axelrod is very upset that this is the fourth time this week that you've taken the blow up doll from the pervert prevention class."

Gee,really hilarious....Dork.

A new high in low.Loser.

Anyone who thinks they know who Miami will have on the roster next season is a fool.

Posted by: Brave New World | May 07, 2014 at 10:43 AM

cool.. you can reference this post in about 5 months.
lebron doesn't opt out and neither does bosh.
they wait until 2015 to resign.
wade opts out, and signs a multi-year deal; maybe 3-5 years for LESS, giving the team room.
this team, after having won 3 in a row AND coming off of 4 straight finals appearances will officially be in dynasty territory, and the luxury tax for a guy worth 5 billion will be peanuts compared to the revenue he'll be getting from being the owner of a dynasty, as well as the money he already has, fool.. lol

Mr. Woodcock is so unfunny it makes me cringe to read his posts. I just imagine him sitting at home (no way this loser works) typing this garbage out and then furiously hitting refresh, giddy at the prospect that one of the three other people who read this blog is going to tell him how hilarious he is. Pretty pathetic really.

these guys all came here for one reason:
they bought into pat riley's vision and plan for winning, and guess what?
they aren't going anywhere..

The SF media decided Mark Jackson had to go because he had the audacity to openly express his religious beliefs. Well that and the fact the the owner of the Warriors is gay.

Good on the Warriors, no place in basketball for ignorant superstition.

Hold on now...the owner of the Warriors is a fag?...not that there is anything wrong with it..hehe

The majority of Americans (73%) identify themselves as Christians.

The intolerance of those who scream the loudest for tolerance is overwhelming.....

That is why they will remain the Warriors. Mark Jackson wins 51 games in the West and he is shown the door. No shot at winning 51 next year but hopefully they are happy with being politically correct. Pretty sad.

Blacks hate gays

Gays hate Christians

Muslims hate Jews

yet Blacks, Gays and Muslims scream the loudest for tolerance.

What coach that wins 51 games gets fired. That reeks of intolerance.

Can somebody beat the Miami Heat, please?

It doesn't look like it will be the Brooklyn Nets, not after last night's 107-86 drubbing in Game 1. Ray Allen had 19 points, which is 11 more than Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett combined for in the loss. Pierce mustered eight points on 3-for-8 shooting. Garnett had an 0-fer in 15:46 of play. Not even Eddie House in his prime could prevent the Nets from losing this series in four or five.

It won't be Indiana, either. The Pathetic Pacers are down, 1-0, to the now-vaunted Washington Wizards. It's a series Indiana won't be able to botch its way out of. Not this time, not against John Wall and Bradley Beal, one of the best young backcourts in the game. Beal has a little Ray Allen in him, which is ironic because he'll have a big part in knocking out the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference before the Pacers would have faced Allen's Heat.

At one time this year, the Pacers were a real threat to keep the Heat out of the Finals and away from their third straight NBA title. Now they're just a major disappointment to fans around the league who would like nothing more than to see Miami lose.

The reunion of the old Big Three in the Heat-Nets series is enough to lure in some curious Boston fans to the games, but forgive me for not getting all nostalgic here. Far more interesting than the reunion is the reminder with every LeBron James blow-by that the Celtics got three first-round picks for guys with a combined age of 73. Garnett is 10 years removed from his best statistical season, when he averaged 24.2 points and 13.5 rebounds. Pierce has averaged 12.8 points per game in the playoffs. That's something Celtics fans wouldn't let Jeff Green live down, nevermind Pierce.

It's somehow easier watching the declines of Pierce and Garnett from afar, like watching an ESPN 30 for 30 documentary of the events rather than seeing the gritty details in real time. For Garnett, who is averaging 19.5 minutes per game in the playoffs, the time is ticking away rather alarmingly.

Danny Ainge finished seventh in the NBA's Executive of the Year voting Wednesday, an award that went to San Antonio's R.C. Buford. It didn't win Ainge any fancy awards this year, but getting three first-round draft picks for Pierce and Garnett may go down as one of the best trades in NBA history. Send him something nice, will you?

Gary Dzen Boston.com

Dolphins hope to do better in draft

By STEVEN WINE (AP Sports Writer) May 6, 2014 5:04 PM AP - Sports




DAVIE, Fla. (AP) -- Dennis Hickey says he's well prepared for his first NFL draft as a general manager, and when the Miami Dolphins begin picking players Thursday night, he wants a calm atmosphere at team headquarters.

Related Stories

'Draft Day' approaches for new Dolphins GM The Associated Press
NFL Draft preview: Dolphins OL needs three starters The SportsXchange
The Dolphins’ draft needs come up for discussion ProFootball Talk on NBC Sports
Team Report - MIAMI DOLPHINS The SportsXchange
2014 NFL mock draft: Joel Bitonio to Miami Dolphins at No. 50 SB Nation

Not that the Dolphins' recent drafts have been anything to get excited about.

Too many poor picks were a big reason for the departure of Hickey's predecessor, Jeff Ireland, whose unpopularity among fans grew with each draft during his six years in Miami.

Hickey, a former Tampa Bay Buccaneers executive, was polite when asked to assess the Dolphins' recent drafts, although he did mention ''mistakes.''

''I'm focused on the 2014 draft,'' Hickey said. ''Obviously - and in Tampa we were the same way - we always want to be reflective, learn from whatever mistakes, try to judge and improve your processes as part of that. That's what we've done, and those are the processes that I brought to the Dolphins.''

Here are five things to consider as the Dolphins try to avoid the poor decisions of the past:

DOING BETTER SHOULD BE EASY: Not one of Ireland's nine picks a year ago cracked the starting lineup, and that included overall No. 3 choice Dion Jordan. Second-round pick Jamar Taylor and third-rounders Dallas Thomas and Will Davis hardly played.

Ireland's record in Rounds 2 and 3 was especially poor, producing just two projected 2014 starters: defensive end Olivier Vernon and linebacker Koa Misi. Only three first-round picks are still with the team.

These are all reasons the Dolphins haven't had a winning season since 2008, and haven't won a playoff game since 2000.

Clashes between Ireland and coach Joe Philbin didn't help with draft decisions. Philbin said he's off to a good start with Hickey, who spent 18 years in Tampa.

''Every step of the way he has earned additional responsibilities based on his work ethic and the type of individual that he is,'' Philbin said. ''It has gone very, very well. He's a real class guy and he's a real credit to the organization.''

HICKEY'S DRAFT HISTORY IS SO-SO: The Bucs won four division titles and one Super Bowl championship during Hickey's time with them, but went 28-52 over the past five years.

Hickey was director of player personnel in 2011-13, and Tampa Bay had a mixed record in the draft in recent years. That includes three players who made the all-rookie team in 2012, and also several second-round whiffs.

Hickey said he'll probably be at work by 6 a.m. on draft day and won't sleep much the night before. But he's confident he and the organization will be ready.

''The goal of draft day is to be calm, to be measured,'' he said. ''We will feel prepared. We will be confident and ready to go, and it can't get here soon enough.''

MIAMI'S BIGGEST HOLES ARE IN THE OFFENSIVE LINE: The Dolphins gave up an NFL-worst 58 sacks last year and ranked 26th in rushing. Four of the five starters from the offensive line have departed, including tackle Jonathan Martin and guard Richie Incognito, who were at the center of a bullying scandal that helped sabotage last season.

Pro Bowler Branden Albert was signed to play left tackle, and Hickey also acquired veterans Shelley Smith and Jason Fox. But the Dolphins need a right tackle and more competition at guard.

They like Notre Dame tackle Zack Martin, who might be gone by the 19th pick. Other possibilities in the first round include UCLA guard Xavier Su'a-Filo, West Virginia tackle Morgan Moses or Alabama guard/tackle Cyrus Kouandjio.

MIAMI IS NEEDY: The Dolphins went 8-8 last year and were outscored 39-7 in their final two games, which underscored weaknesses at numerous positions.

Veteran linebackers Dannell Ellerbe and Philip Wheeler had disappointing seasons after signing free agent deals, and the draft is deep in talent at the position, making linebacker a likely option in the early rounds. Alabama's C.J. Mosley is a possibility if Hickey uses his top pick on a linebacker.

Hickey might also decide to give new offensive coordinator Bill Lazor help at receiver in the first round.

TRADING DOWN IS A POSSIBILITY: Hickey held a news conference last week but declined to discuss players in the draft, or even talk about specific positions. He did say he's open to trading up or down, and the latter might be more likely because he finds appealing the idea of swapping one pick for two lower ones.

''I always want to have more picks,'' he said.

That would mean more chances to get it right, something the Dolphins haven't done a lot in recent drafts.


AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org and http://twitter.com/AP-NFL


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Interesting Philbin saying Hickey has earned "additional responsibilities". No doubt about who is running this team right now. Hickey basically is still in the same role he had in Tampa Director Of Player Personnel. Joe Philbin is running this team.

BB, just like I told you from the beginning..clue-less Joe is in charge but of course he'll let Hickey take the fall if his decisions in the draft or free agency don't pan out..you all know know how I feel about his coaching, let's see how he does in charge of the draft...hey maybe he'll turn out to be a good "picker"

jackson wasn't fired for being a christian, you morons.
he was fired much for the same reason ireland was; there was a serious disconnect between management and coaching.
jackson was a lone wolf, he did not get along with ownership, and i am also hearing that he didn't get along with jerry west.
neither did phil, but that's another story.
as for the "prejudice" and "intolerance" white christians on here keep screaming about, i'm all with you.
it's incredible what white christian men have been able to achieve in this country in the face of so much hardship and prejudice; my heart goes out to all of you!

DOING BETTER SHOULD THAN ME WILL BE EASY: Not one of my nine picks a year ago cracked the starting lineup, and that included overall No. 3 choice Dion Jordan. Second-round pick Jamar Taylor and third-rounders Dallas Thomas and Will Davis hardly played.

Who ever pulled the free agent signings Philbin or Hickey seemed to pick up solid players.

BLACK Christian coach, WHITE gay team president. BLACK Christian coach is not overly enthusiastic when Jason Collins made his pronouncement last year that he was gay. LIBERAL WHITE SF media goes crazy. And the firing of the BLACK Christian coach had nothing to do with his Christian beliefs?

no it didn't, you idiot..lol.. try READING for a change; about jerry west, about jackson not "playing ball" with management..

and baby?
there's nothing more enjoyable this time of the year, as the heat march toward immortality, than you cut and pasting articles about KG and pierce from boston.com..lol

and politically incorrect? i'm surprised you didn't blame obama or benghazi, you douche..

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