Shortly after the Miami Heat honed losing into a true art -- with a second loss to the Charlotte Bobcats on November 13 -- team president and coach Pat Riley was ready to school Shaq, Jason Williams, and whatever other warm bodies had been stuffed into red-and-black 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.
What if he really does get that desperate? Its not impossible: Bill Russell played while he was coach of the Celtics, and Michael Jordan went from the presidents office to missing jumpers for the Washington Wizards. Way back when, Riley was a first-round pick for the New York Knicks, and in the 11th round of the NFL draft, the Dallas Cowboys wanted him. He scored more than 3,900 points in nine seasons in the NBA. Frankly the Heat could use him, and with those pesky Bobcats back in town, Riles might once again be tempted. See whether he breaks out the jersey and shorts at the American Airlines Arena tonight at 7:30.
Tue., Nov. 27, 7:30 p.m., 2007