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THE INSIDE TRACK | MORNING BRIEFING

Feedback Not Johnson's Food for Thought

May 09, 1996|MAL FLORENCE

Jimmy Johnson, the Miami Dolphins' new coach, joked with his players during a recent mini-camp, and even had a barbecue with coaches, players and front-office personnel at the end of last week's workouts.

Mr. Nice Guy? Well. . . .

"Our guys always understand they can speak freely," Johnson told the Miami Herald. "That doesn't mean I'm going to listen. I'll listen to their opinions, but we're still going to go back and do it the way I want it done.

"This is not a democracy."

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Trivia time: What is the longest night game in National League history?

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Off and freaking: Blackie Sherrod of the Dallas Morning News writes that volatile linebacker Bryan Cox took part of his $5-million signing bonus from the Chicago Bears and bought five colts he will race in Florida.

"His outfit: Freak Man Stable, a name fittingly selected by himself."

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Easy, man, easy: Cox's viewing habits run to violence. "To see somebody get stabbed or shot, it kind of gets you excited," he said. "You know it's not real, it's a movie. But it gets you closer to what you actually feel in a game."

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Handle with care: According to Playboy magazine, a company in San Rafael, Calif., is manufacturing the "Peace Missile" driver and putter. The heads of the clubs are made from the metal of recycled Soviet SS-23 nuclear missiles.

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Really big dog: Financial World magazine reports that 12 NHL teams, as well as baseball's San Diego and Pittsburgh franchises, are estimated to be worth less than $68 million, the amount of Milwaukee Buck forward Glenn Robinson's contract.

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Get on with it: Alan Truex in the Houston Chronicle: "Vince Coleman complained that on a cold day in Cincinnati, umpire Joe West told him, 'You're not walking, swing the bat.' "

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Focused: The Chicago Bulls are apparently not resting on their laurels of the regular season. They wear T-shirts in practice that read: "72-10 . . . Don't Mean a Thing/Without the Ring."

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Ouch! Mike Lupica in the New York Daily News: "To become a television lightweight, [Turner Broadcasting's] Dick Versace would have to move up a couple of weight classes."

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Looking back: On this day in 1961, Jim Gentile of the Baltimore Orioles hit consecutive grand slams in the first and second innings of a 13-5 rout of the Minnesota Twins.

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Trivia answer: The Dodgers lost to the Astros, 5-4, in a 7-hour 14-minute, 22-inning game on June 3, 1989 in Houston.

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And finally: Actress Sheryl Lee Ralph told Inside Sports magazine that Michael Jordan can play more than basketball.

"He's a good backgammon player. You don't hear a lot about his skill at that game, but let me tell you, he is deadly."

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