An Investigation: Is the Miami Heat's Burnie the Most Terrifying Mascot in Florida?

Does looking at Burnie cause you to sob uncontrollably?
Does looking at Burnie cause you to sob uncontrollably? Photo by Monica McGivern
Imagine you're Burnie, the mascot for the Miami Heat, sitting there on a quiet Tuesday morning, not bothering anyone, just sipping coffee while reading the newspaper and staring out onto Biscayne Bay. It's the off-season and you're finally looking forward to some much-needed downtime.

Then a single tweet fired off from hundreds of miles away ruins your day. Some dude took the time to put together a map. Each of the states is plastered with a corresponding picture of a mascot classified as "most terrifying." For Florida, it's you.

Burnie is the most terrifying mascot from here to the Panhandle.

Not cool, man. Totally off base and uncalled for. Not to mention, completely and utterly, factually wrong.
The opinion-based map was made by Chris Grosse, a marketing director at Penn State University. It is obviously just for fun. No mascots were hurt in the making of this map. Well, other than feelings. Mascot feelings were definitely hurt.

Grosse tells New Times (yes, we investigated this further) Burnie's features pushed him ahead of the pack. "I think it was the nose that put it over the top," Grosse says. "Huge green nose, no mouth. Frightening."

That's fair. We get that. But as most Miami Heat fans will tell you, Burnie is harmless as long as you stay away from his antics. Steer clear of anything and everything involving this animal, and you won't get hurt. Agree to his requests, and you could end up his landing spot — as in the below video.
While we respect Grosse's opinion, New Times must respectfully disagree. Everyone knows the most terrifying mascot in Florida is the Miami Dolphins' T.D., whose costume includes a muscular man's torso and a dolphin head. Nightmare fuel. Not a dude you want to owe money. Not a guy you want your sister dating. Just a guy who definitely has a past and should not be trusted.

The "lights off and this mascot walks into your bedroom" test obviously reveals T.D. is the mascot you'd least like to see at 3 a.m. Burnie might be there, but only for a hug, possibly asking if it's OK if he has a glass of milk. T.D. looks as if he could kick your ass — thus, he's a tad more terrifying than a furry dude who dances too close to you with his big green basketball nose.

We're sorry a tweet ruined your Tuesday, Burnie. We hope this investigation helps you get back to your off-season.
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Ryan Yousefi is a freelance writer for Miami New Times, a lover of sports, and an expert consumer of craft beer and pho. Hanley Ramirez once stole a baseball from him and to this day still owes him $10.

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