Did you know? The only team with fewer Sunday Night Football appearances than the Miami Dolphins is the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The Miami Dolphins have gotten little love from the scheduling committee when it comes to prime time games, and deservedly so. The league and the networks prefer to air games between teams that are contenders and are exciting, and the Dolphins have been neither for a long time.
They get a Monday Night game here and there, sure. And everyone and their mother plays on Thursday Nights. But their list of Sunday Night appearances reads like a barren wasteland.
Sunday Night Football began airing on NBC in 2006, and it quickly became the premier game of the week. After a long reign, Monday Night Football took second fiddle, as everything about the SNF broadcast felt superior; the production, the broadcasters, and the games all felt like the must-see event of the week.
Dolphins fans don’t even really know what it feels like to have their team playing under the brightest of lights. Since 2006, Miami has appeared on SNF a pathetic three times, the least amount of any team other than the Jaguars (2).
How hard to believe is that, by comparison? The team with the most appearances is the Cowboys with 54. Okay, America’s team, that makes sense. The Patriots have 41. The Bears 30, the Redskins/Commanders 19. Even the Lions have 9 SNF games, and the Browns have 5.
Fun facts about the Dolphins and prime time games:
Sunday Night Football began airing on NBC in 2006, about the time it became the premiere game of the week, over MNF.
Since then, the Miami Dolphins have appeared on SNF just 3 times, fewer than any team other than the Jaguars
— Anthony Cardenas (@FinsByTone) April 25, 2022
Not only do the Miami Dolphins have just three Sunday Night games under their belt, one of them was actually a Thursday Night contest, as it was the inaugural game for the broadcast back in 2006. They actually had a fourth SNF game scheduled for Week 12 in 2009 against the Patriots, but it was flexed in favor of a Vikings/Cardinals matchup.
But perhaps this is all for good reason. The Dolphins are 0-3 in their illustrious history on Sunday Night Football.
They have a chance to change the tide, finally, in 2022. Miami will play host to the Pittsburgh Steelers for a Week 7 match up on October 23rd, and it will be played in front of a national audience on NBC. Expect Dolphins fans to be in full throat.
The Steelers are always a tough match up, but they may be in a transition phase now that long time quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has retired, and the Dolphins should look to capitalize if Pittsburgh struggles to start the season. It will be a winnable game for Miami, especially playing at home, but a Mike Tomlin-led team is a team to be feared.
Xavien Howard Miami Dolphins (Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images)
There will also be a familiar face on the opposing sideline. Former Dolphins head coach Brian Flores has been hired as a defensive assistant by the Steelers, and he will undoubtedly be looking to bring the heat on the quarterback that his rocky relationship with was made so public after his departure.
The Dolphins themselves could be first-rate entertainment. There has been an influx of speed to their offense, and their defense should remain as one of the top units in the league, giving them a chance to be one of the must-watch teams this coming season. Don’t look now, but the NFL could end up regretting not giving Tua Tagovailoa and Tyreek Hill another prime time game or two.
We will of course have to wait to see how both teams fare in the early going of the season, given Miami’s treacherous schedule over the first four games. But the Scheduling Gods have finally blessed us with an elusive Sunday Night Football appearance, and us Miami Dolphins fans will be forever grateful.
Houston RHP Odorizzi stretchered off field in Boston
BOSTON (AP) — Houston Astros right-hander Jake Odorizzi collapsed running to cover first base in the fifth inning Monday night against the Boston Red Sox and was taken off the Fenway Park field on a stretcher.
Odorizzi, who entered the game with a 15 2/3 inning shutout streak, appeared to twist his left leg awkwardly on the delivery to Kiké Hernandez. When he turned to cover first base, he took a step and then sprawled out, face down, on the grass.
He remained there after the out was recorded, and Astros staff rushed to tend to him. He was loaded onto a stretcher and wheeled off.
Odorizzi was 3-2 with a 3.13 ERA this season. The Red Sox led 2-1 when he left the game.
Andrew Wiggins’ Luka Doncic challenge is next chapter of playoff reputation
Wiggins’ Luka challenge is next chapter of his playoff rep originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
As a former No. 1 overall draft pick whose career has been defined as a mixed bag of expectations vs. reality, Wiggins has done nothing but open eyes through the first two rounds of the playoffs. He has invited challenges, shown a new side of swagger with poster dunks and let his hustle and athleticism do all the talking as a defensive menace and rebounding machine.
How would he assess his first 11 games of these playoffs? About how you would expect the always even-keel small forward.
“I feel like I’ve been pretty solid,” Wiggins said Monday at Chase Center following Warriors practice. “Can still do more, still help the team more.”
He has been more than solid, and the Warriors are going to need him now more than ever against Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference finals, starting Wednesday night in Game 1.
Wiggins is averaging 14.5 points, 6.9 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game in the playoffs, while shooting 40 percent on 3-pointers. He averaged 17.2 points in the regular season and shot 39.3 percent from deep. But his rebounding averages were at 4.5 and he also averaged 0.7 blocks per game.
The first-time All-Star has been engaged, diving for loose balls and showcasing a catch radius of Calvin Johnson with his ability to snag rebounds. He has grabbed at least five offensive rebounds three times in the playoffs, and his regular-season high was four offensive rebounds in a single game. In the Warriors’ Game 6 win over the Grizzlies, Wiggins came away with six offensive rebounds, 11 total and was a game-high plus-20 in plus-minus.
His rebounding will be needed against Dallas. But his main assignment will be using his length, strength and quickness to disrupt Doncic any way he can.
“It’s gonna be a tough matchup, for sure,” Wiggins said when asked about guarding Doncic. “You’ve seen what he’s been doing these whole playoffs. It’s gonna be a team effort. All of us, the whole team are going to have to do it collectively.
“He’s a handful.”
Doncic, 23, has put on a show, carrying the No. 4-seeded Mavs to the conference finals after missing the first three games of the first round to a strained calf. He put up 30 points and 10 rebounds his first game back, and followed that up with 33 and 13 two days later. Over 10 games this postseason, Doncic is averaging 31.5 points, 10.1 rebounds and 6.6 assists per game.
Dallas won three of its four games against Golden State in the regular season, and Doncic averaged 31.5 points, 9.0 rebounds and 5.5 assists while shooting 47.6 percent from the field and 38.2 percent on 3-pointers. Yes, the Warriors have their work cut out for them.
That work becomes slightly easier and less taxing if Playoff Wiggins shows up. After watching Grizzlies backup point guard Tyus Jones torch the Warriors for two straight games with Ja Morant shelved, Wiggins told coach Mike Brown that he wanted to pick up Jones from the start in Game 6. Not when he crosses halfcourt — the full length of the floor, the moment he steps in-bounds.
Jones scored seven points, and went 2-for-12 from the field. He scored 21 points in Game 5 and 19 in Game 4. Wiggins might be quiet, but his competitive fire is mighty loud on the inside, just like so many of his other mislabeled teammates.
The reality is, Doncic is going to get his. He’s going to put up points, he’s going to fill up the box score. It’s about making him work in doing so, just as Draymond Green did to Nikola Jokic in the first round. Wiggins’ inner competitive spirit is going to need to show up. So is another key aspect of the Warriors as a whole.
His teammates revel in the chance of making Wiggins smile. Whether it’s showing him pictures and videos of him throwing it down on someone or a different motivational tactic, they’ve been there to have everybody else see a different side of himself. Nobody enjoys it more than Steph Curry.
“We understand what he’s capable of in this league,” Curry said Monday when asked about the importance of making his teammate smile. “All the things he’s gone through in his career from being the No. 1 pick to having some amazing statistical years in Minnesota but not having much to show for it to coming here. We understand that he can impact winning basketball.
“For him, it’s just a matter of if he’s locked in and engaged, in terms of what that actually means with what he’s focused on on the court. That’s being physical on defense, taking those matchups seriously, taking on the challenge of it, rebounding the basketball and then just being aggressive on offense — attacking the paint or taking open shots.
“When all that happens, he has a different impact on the game, and we all appreciate and know it makes us better.”
The second Wiggins was asked about Curry making him smile, his grin grew exponentially. He was beaming at the podium. Since Wiggins came into the league in 2014, all he has associated with the Warriors is winning.
Well, the keys players to those wins — Curry, Green, Klay Thompson, Andre Iguodala and others — know what a vital part he now is to their championship goals and culture.
It’s simple: The more wins, the more smiles. Knocking Doncic off his path in the slightest certainly should bring the Warriors win, and have Wiggins with his teeth sparkling and his mouth wide open from ear to ear.
“Usually I’m just cool all the way,” Wiggins said with a hand gesture imitating a long straight line. “But it’s good to show emotions sometimes, and I feel like last game deserved it. I’ve never been here before, so it’s a special opportunity.
“And you’ll see a lot more smiles the further we go.”
Celtics alumnus Rajon Rondo allegedly pulls gun in domestic incident
Disturbing allegations surrounding former Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo have begun to percolate through the NBA media sphere after a TMZ report describing the former Boston point guard as having verbally abused and threatened his onetime partner Ashley Bachelor and their child with a gun came to light.
Bachelor reportedly was granted a protective order against Rondo granting custody of the children to Bachelor per TMZ, who note “the court’s granting of the Emergency Protective Order isn’t an indication of the ferocity of the claims within it” adding that it is “simply a temporary order until the parties can get before a judge and argue the merits of a protective order.”
ESPN’s Malika Andrews relates that the NBA is aware of the allegations and “are in the process of gathering more information.” An unrestricted free agent this offseason near the twilight of his career at age 36, it remains unclear how the league will respond to the allegations.
As of this writing, Rondo has not been charged with any crime and has not publicly addressed them since they broke on Monday morning.
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