Reasons we love sports, Vols. 3 & 4: Temper tantrums and the sound of inevitability

Reason Number Three: Fire

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?

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40 Replies to “Reasons we love sports, Vols. 3 & 4: Temper tantrums and the sound of inevitability”

  1. Pingback: Reasons we love sports, Vols. 3 & 4: Temper tantrums and the sound of inevitability - BallHyped, MLB | BallHyped Sports Blogs

  2. I loved watching Ozzie get run from a spring game. I wonder how his love affair with Joe West will travel?

    Trust me, if I could replicate that Tressel thing at will, I’d have written about lots of coaches/managers by now…

  3. Fireworks: Ozzie and Zambrano in the same dugout on a day when things aren’t going well for the pitcher. I can’t wait.

    Happy St. Patricks Day me lad!

  4. Can things get worse for the Knicks? Sure they can. Dolan can bring back his secret lover, Isaiah Thomas.

  5. Does anyone within the Knicks’ organization have any god-damn sense ? The Dolan family may well started off Cablevision and made it a profitable corporation and cable service provider by gouging their customers but when it comes to all of their sporting interests they’ve been absolutely dumb as a box of rocks ! tophatal ………..

  6. Nostradubus…

    I actually plan to head down to South Florida some time this baseball season and check out a Marlins game in that new stadium.

    I’m hoping Ozzie gets tossed out of that one too. I figure the odds of that are pretty good.

  7. Aer….

    Zambrano is definitely a lunatic. Hide the water coolers on his bad days.

    And a happy St Patty’s to you too, sir. I’ll be bringing my green dye to work tomorrow.

  8. Snake…

    I think the mere fact they were even considering bringing back Isiah after all they had been through shows you that calmer senses are not running that franchise.

    Like I’ve said before, I’ll gladly submit my resume and guarantee them a trip to the playoffs every season I’m there.

    I mean, really, how difficult is it to make the NBA playoffs. All you really need is one star.

  9. Al…

    Like I told Snake, I’d gladly serve as a scout or consultant for the Knickerbockers and clean up that ship within a single season.

    I’d just need Dwight Howard-like decision making abilities.

  10. Dwight Howard-like decision making abilities??? Okay, no way, okay, no way, okay, no way…hahaha

  11. Dwight’s indecision ? Wait ’til his ex’s (Royce Reed) book comes out . If her alleged claims are anything to go by then his game in the boudoir wasn’t all that great , even though they fathered Dwight Jr . According to Royce Reed , the player failed to hit her G Spot . He must’ve done it at least once if Dwight Jr came along don’t you think ? Any chance that B DeBusschere , Frazier , Barnett , Jackson and Willis Reed will suit up for the Knicks in future games if there’s no semblance of consistency with the current tam ? Your thoughts ?

    I thought that the only problem that James Dolan had was to how to continue gouging the consumers who subscribe to his cable company Cablevision ? Does Dwight have to be on some sort of astral plane before he actually commits long term to the Magic ? Just askin’ that’s all !“>

    tophatal …..

  12. Chris John Chaney ………. beware of the angry ” black man ” . Lord have mercy .

    At least Dwight isn’t out make money off his indecision the way that LBJ did , albeit that LeBron donated the $ 250k he got from ESPN to the Boys & Girls Club . I mean this is the guy who on average has earned in excess of $20million a year since his entry in the NBA with endorsements and salary but gouges ESPN for a quarter mil to get in the good graces of the fans . WTF ! Who’s the guy offering him PR advice ? Leave Dwight’s indecision out of this as he’s gonna have some serious “baby mama ” drama coming up real soon (if you remember when his ex became pregnant D-How’ denied he was the the father of Dwight Jr ’til the DNA proved otherwise — [this from the then upstanding Christian kid ]) . His ex, former Heat and Magic dancer , Royce Reed is about to write a tell-all book about the player and his lack of real know how in the boudoir /bedroom .

    Any chance of Bradley , Debusschere , Frazier , Jackson and Reed from that championship winning team suiting up for the Knicks in any of their games ? Your thoughts . Anything has to be better than watching the current bunch of retards on this team ! The Knicks have been this bad since o Isiah Thomas was the GM and Larry Brown was calling the shots from the sidelines !

    tophatal …………..

  13. Ummm. Gators. I had some deep-fried gator nuggets last night. Everything was good until my stomach started growling.

  14. I have always loved Ozzie, maybe it’s cause he managed for a team I didn’t really care about. You never fault the guys that wear their hearts on their sleeves, because you know they genuinely do care.

    I think the Knicks biggest problem is Amare. He hasn’t been doing much for that huge contract he got. Maybe they’ll figure out a better way to use him under Woodson…

  15. And Al…

    Knowing my patrons the way I do, it’ll like be a happy and DRUNKEN St. Patty’s day.

    But when are they not.

    Be careful if you’re out and about.

  16. Snake…

    The Gators had themselves some Cavaliers nuggets yesterday afternoon and even more impressively, Norfolk State (go ahead, name their mascot off the top of your head) had themselves some number two-seeded Mizzou Tiger nuggets, clearing a path for Florida to the Sweet 16….

    as long as they scout that team properly. That kid O’Quinn on Norfolk State (Happy St Patty’s day to YOU, sir) was a beast last night. 26 and 12.

    Scout ’em out, Donovan.

  17. I dig Ozzie too, Chap. He’s the best soundbite in baseball by far.

    And the best part is that he doesn’t care about impressing anybody. He knows winning will take care of that.

    Woodson’s off to a pretty good head start with the Knickerbockers. 2-0.

    I would imagine D’Antoni’s probably laying low right about now.

  18. Looks like the Knicks did need a makeover.. D’Antoni out, Woodson in, and what do you know… the Knicks are 2-0. Let’s see how much New York really didn’t like D’Antoni.

    Gotta love sports for the drama, and who doesn’t love managers arguing with umpires and getting ejected. It’s not as exciting as bench-clearing brawls or hockey fights, but a definite plus.

  19. BS…

    By no means am I defending D’Antoni in this situation but it should be noted that his six straight losses came AT Boston, AT Dallas, AT San Antonio, AT Milwaukee, vs Philly and AT Chicago while Woodson’s two wins have come at home to a dysfunctional and unhealthy Blazers team and then the Pacers.

    That’s not to say the Knicks didn’t need a change. Clearly what D’Antoni was doing was not working and Woodson stepped into a pretty good situation. We’ll see how he handles it and whether he can make a full-time gig out of it.

    Because all know that somewhere, Phil is lurking.

    And here’s looking forward to the first bench-clearing brawl of the Major League season.

  20. I think a lot of people didn’t think that Jeremy Lin could take them far, and they were right. He’s a good player, but he’s not going to be the difference between a deep playoff run and a first round exit. They need to get Carmelo and Stoudmire going before they worry about Lin.

  21. JM…

    It’s a point guard-strong league, with the exceptions of Los Angeles and Miami of course who have Kobe and LeBron/Wade to handle the ball during crunch time.

    If the Knicks were to face a Bulls team in the opening round, Rose would break Lin down. Fortunately for the Knicks, the bulk of the stronger points guards play out West.

    I fully expect the Knicks to get into the playoffs, but they should really be shooting for a sixth seed.

  22. Chris Do you know how hard it is for a young and proud Englishman to stay sober over St Paddy’s Day weekend ? That’s like suggesting to a politician not to say something stupid ! The Knicks gain a playoff berth ? How much Guinness have you drank over the weekend ? They’re now in dog-fight with the Bucks for that final berth in the conference and with the Bucks having just acquired Monta Ellis I’m not sold on the Knicks at all ! They can’t play and choose not to play defense . That’s going to be their downfall should they make the postseason .

    tophatal ………….

  23. Chris

    Bracket busting ? Yep , after the Dukies’ loss let’s just say my interest in the Tourney has suddenly waned ! Good run by the USF Bulls , unfortunately it came to an end a little too soon .

    ‘noles , done and Gators done . Is that a sad indictment of college basketball within the state ?

    tophatal ……….

  24. Al…

    It was another weekend serving the drunks but that’s what St Patty’s is all about, yes?

    I think the Knicks momentum will carry them into the playoffs.

    At least we know David Stern wants that to happen.

  25. Al…

    You’re not the only one surprised Miami got themselves a new stadium.

    I mean, how many stadiums do they have down there?

    A bunch, I can tell you that.

    I hear the new one’s nice and I do plan on heading down there to catch a game this season.

    I would imagine they had plenty of seats, both individual and corporate pre-sold.

    But I can tell you that I went to a Marlins game back in the day (Remember when they were called the Florida Marlins?) and there were about three thousand people in the stands.

  26. Chris The Marlins got themselves a new stadium at the expense of the taxpayers of the city of Miami and the Feds are investigating that . The Mayor (Tomas Regalado) and council members though remain extremely silent as to what went down concerning the deal . Boy am I glad that the town of Dundee , Fl isn’t that ambitious , albeit that one of my best friends just happens to be the town manager . We ain’t got the sort of money to build a multimillion dollar stadium for a professional sports’ franchise . We leave that sort of thing to the city of Lakeland .

    How crazy is is that the DL list in baseball now has some of the highest paid players in the game on it ? Not only that but many of them won’t be ready in time for Opening Day .

    So Jets CB Antonio Cromartie wasn’t so welcoming about Timmy but I guess he’s willing to change his mind if Tebow proves to be a better performer than Sanchez was last season ? Your thoughts ?

    tophatal ………

  27. Something shady going on in Miami, Al? That shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. I thought Crockett and Tubbs cleaned up that city years ago. But what are they gonna do, tear the stadium down? No, they’ll just wait until the Heat win their title and in the jubilation, all will be forgotten.

    It doesn’t surprise me that designated hitters are making the big bucks these days. They’re either a) the only power hitters on a team or b) big name veterans trying to extend their careers.

    And re: the Jets, Al? We’ll just have to see what happens. At least they have to play the Dolphins and Bills each twice which shouldn’t propose all that much of a challenge.

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