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The Inside Track | MORNING BRIEFING

Something Has Gone Bad: Oops, It's the Fish

January 16, 2002|Mal Florence

Dan Le Batard of the Miami Herald commenting vehemently on the Dolphins losing to the Baltimore Ravens in a playoff game:

"Miami was ravaged and shamed by Baltimore, a defending champion in more ways than one, and the 20-3 bullying was such that the careening Dolphins were sent stumbling all the way into their off-season looking lost and scared and impotent, a frightened child in a haunted place.

"Miami has now made its past four playoff exits by the combined score of 147-13, which is as preposterous as it is unfathomable."

No it isn't, Dan. They're just not very good.

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Trivia time: Who holds the NBA record for fouling out?

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Mocking Moss: Fired Minnesota Viking coach Dennis Green will become a TV fishing commentator.

"You couldn't find a man more qualified to speak on bass than Green," said Steve Hummer of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

"After working so long with Randy Moss, he is a certified expert on big mouths."

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More Moss: Mike Bianchi in the Orlando Sentinel: "The Minnesota Vikings' coaching change will do Randy Moss good. Next year, under new coach Mike Tice, I say Moss will give at least 78.3%."

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Still more Moss: Fox analyst Marv Levy: "The difference between Randy Moss and a dollar bill is, you can still get four quarters out of a dollar bill."

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Power failure: Tony Kornheiser in the Washington Post, on the Indianapolis Colts' failure to acquire Steve Spurrier as coach: "You don't think the Colts wanted Spurrier? With Peyton Manning, Edgerrin James and Marvin Harrison? Are you kidding me? That would have been like giving Roger Penske an 800-horsepower engine to tinker with."

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His new toy: Mike Lopresti in USA Today wonders how Spurrier and Washington Redskin owner Daniel Snyder will co-exist: "You knew Snyder would just have to have him, and be the first owner on the block with a Steve Spurrier.

"But you wonder how their relationship goes from here. Is Washington big enough for both of their egos? Is the continent of Asia?"

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Good question: Gil LeBreton of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram on assignment here: "There is no place on this planet quite like Los Angeles. Randy Newman was right. It's easy to be seduced by L.A.'s weather, its beaches, its lifestyle, its star power.

"[Yet,] on a gorgeous afternoon, perfect for playoff football, the storied Los Angeles Coliseum sat empty. How does a Mayberry of a town like Nashville have an NFL team and the metropolis of Los Angeles still doesn't?"

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Trivia answer: Vern Mikkelsen of the Minneapolis Lakers, 127 times, from 1951 to 1959.

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And finally: TV analyst Danny Ainge, a former Portland Trail Blazer, doesn't mince words when it comes to the team's myriad problems, blaming most of them on management: "The Rasheed [Wallace] thing has gotten worse, not better, over time, and the Shawn Kemp thing is a nightmare that really hurt the franchise.

"Paying Scottie Pippen that kind of money after the best years of his career were over [is a problem]. There was Ruben Patterson's circumstances off the court [an assault plea]. Didn't they bring in Shawn and Ruben to make Rasheed look better?"

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