Shortly after the point at which the Miami Heat honed losing into a true art – that would be with a second loss in the young season to the Charlotte Bobcats on Nov. 13 – Heat president and coach Pat Riley was ready to school Shaq, Jason Williams, and whatever other warm bodies had been stuffed into Heat jerseys. “I guarantee you I should suit up,” he told the press. “I'd play better than some of them right now. I guarantee it. I swear to God. With an old hip and 62 years old and I can't see, I'll play better than some of my guys tonight.”

Ignore for a moment that with his braggadocio, Riley pronounced himself a failure as a teacher and an executive. What if he really does get that desperate? It’s not impossible; Bill Russell played while coach of the Celtics, and Michael Jordan went from the president’s office to missing jumpers for the Washington Wizards. The old coach was a first-round pick of the New York Knicks, and, in the 11th round of the NFL draft, of the Dallas Cowboys, way back when. He scored more than 3,900 points in nine seasons in the NBA. The Heat frankly could use him, and with those pesky Bobcats back in Miami, Riley may once again be tempted. See whether Riles breaks out the short shorts at the American Airlines Arena (601 Biscayne Blvd, Miami) on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. Tickets begin at $10. Call 786-777-4667, or visit
Tue., Nov. 27, 2007

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Sam Eifling
Contact: Sam Eifling