Basketball

ASK IRA: Has Michael Jordan set up another rivalry vs. Heat?

ASK IRA: Has Michael Jordan set up another rivalry vs. Heat?

Q: So will the Miami Heat organization have some competition now that Derek Jeter and Michael Jordan own a professional sports team in Miami? — Stuart.

A: I figure that Michael will have a full plate with the Hornets, but I’m also of the belief that strong sports teams in a market only fuel the sports appetite of the overall market. Micky Arison often has cited Dolphins victories on social media and has had a presence at Marlins Park over the years, as well. When you have faces of the franchise such as Pat Riley and Derek Jeter, it only strengthens the credibility. In that respect, I would not overstate Michael Jordan any more than when the Heat were listing Julio Iglesias as a part owner. If Michael Jordan is to torment Pat Riley, I’m sure the preference would be on the basketball court. In fact, for the all the Heat players and staffers at Marlins games over the years, I can’t recall much of a presence from Riley.

Q: The Knicks and Philly on Christmas? Come on, man. The Heat get no respect. The Heat will be must-see TV. Just wait. — Tammy.

A: I would say that 41-41 teams generally are limited in their national exposure, but then you see what the Knicks and 76ers are getting and you have to wonder. While the outside impression is that the Heat are a star-less team, I wonder if that doesn’t sell Hassan Whiteside short. We’ll know the degree of the potential national snubs when the full scheduled is released Monday, but keep in mind that ESPN already has committed to televising the Heat’s Dec. 9 game against the Nets in Mexico City, so there’s that. And Heat-Bulls on Martin Luther King Day in Chicago also will get national exposure.

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