Aside for being known for his thick, often unintelligible and frequently vulgar, Venezuelan accent, Ozzie Guillen is at it once again… and the season hasn’t even started!
In 2005, Guillen garnered instant hero status in Chicago after managing the White Sox to their first World Series title since World War I. This off-season, after years of failing to duplicate that success, GM Ken Williams got tired of his act and the two decided it was best to part ways.
Guillen now manages the new-look Miami Marlins but rest assured, it’s the same old Ozzie.
Last Tuesday, on a beautiful Fort Myers afternoon, Guillen was tossed from a spring training game.
Let me repeat that.
Ozzie Guillen was thrown out… of an exhibition game.
How awesome is that? I’m not sure when the last time a manager was thrown out of a Spring Training game but I wouldn’t be surprised if Guillen holds the record.
At least Marlins’ fans are getting a sneak peak of what they can expect this season, as if they didn’t already know. The good ol’ boy network might not think Ozzie’s good for the game with his F-bomb frequency but at least he’ll never be accused of not caring.
Reason Number Four: Inevitability
I was in the middle of writing a piece about D’Antoni’s frustrations in the Big Apple, wondering why he would shout at his team and look surprised when they didn’t play defense. I mean, he does know he’s Mike D’Antoni, right?
I would have been a genius had I put up the D’Antoni post the day before he resigned, just like Dubsism did about Tressell the day before he got canned from Ohio State, although to be perfectly honest, neither departure was all that hard to predict.
The Knicks were darlings of the NBA right before the All-Star break but losing six consecutive games, as well as the respect of his locker room, prompted D’Antoni’s resignation. With two of the best scorers and one of the hottest commodities in the league, the Knickerbockers are still an incredibly mediocre team. That blame, at least initially, fell on D’Antoni’s shoulders. Wherefore art thou, Phil Jackson?
In D’Antoni’s defense (two words rarely used together in the same sentence), it should be noted that five of those six losses came on the road to playoff teams. Sure, the mid-season Linsanity was fine and dandy but nobody, ever, EVER, confused this with a team that could beat either the Heat or the Bulls in a seven-game series and this year, those are the only two Eastern Conference teams that count.
The Knicks are 18th in the league in both points allowed per game and defensive field goal percentage and nowhere close to making improvements in those areas. Furthermore, D’Antoni could never find a way to get Carmelo, Amare Stoudemire and the new kid on the block to co-exist. That’s why his departure was inevitable.
What D’Antoni should have done is taken a page out of John Fox’s playbook. Remember how Fox revamped the entire Denver Broncos offense to fit Tim Tebow… and more importantly win games? Isn’t that what successful coaches do, that is, as long as they’re still employed?
Sometimes it takes swallowing one’s pride and adapting to one’s environment to succeed in this world. Clearly the lack of communication and trust between bench and sidelines resulted in D’Antoni no longer Gardening and the Knicks in limbo.
At least Knicks fans can take solace in the fact that things can’t get any worse… or can they?