Jeffrey Loria and Stephen Ross Can Learn a Lot From Micky Arison
Jeffrey Loria and Stephen Ross need to set up a powwow with Micky Arison and Pat Riley as soon as possible. Last Thursday, when the Miami Heat clinched its second NBA championship in six years, Arison and Riley proved they have the blueprint to consistently field a winning team and keep the fans coming back for more. Right now the Heat organization is light years ahead of the Miami Dolphins and the Miami Marlins.
With the Big Three intact and up-and-coming stars in Mario Chalmers and Norris Cole, the Heat will win more championships. The same can't be said of the football and baseball franchises.
The Marlins' blueprint involves bait and switch. Fans were led to believe they would get Albert Pujols and Cuban phenom Yoenis Cespedes. Instead, Loria wasted money on free agents who are not producing. Their closer, Heath Bell, who got a $27 million deal, had an ERA of 8.47 through the end of May. Although he has lowered it to 5.68, Bell has still been a huge disappointment. Meanwhile, John Buck, the catcher brought in for $18 million, has a batting average of .197, with only five home runs and 14 runs batted in. The team's established stars -- Hanley Ramirez, Josh Johnson, and Ricky Nolasco -- have mostly sucked too.
And Loria's bold hire of Ozzie Guillen blew up in his face. Ever since Guillen was chastised for praising Fidel Castro, he has shut the hell up. He can no longer be the crazy, outspoken manager the Marlins wanted. If it weren't for Giancarlo Stanton and Jose Reyes, the Marlins would be dead in the water.
Like the Marlins, the Miami Dolphins are also trying to drum up fan interest with smoke and mirrors. Though it's nice that the Dolphins drafted two University of Miami players and signed free agent wide receiver and hometown hero Chad Ochocinco, the city's storied football team won't win a Super Bowl as long as Jeff Ireland remains the general manager.
Loria and Ross are a couple of rich dudes who have no clue when it comes to building winning franchises. That's because they rely on team presidents and general managers who are taking them to the cleaners by signing questionable players instead of bona fide superstars.
Arison, on the other hand, has the best team president in basketball running the Heat.
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