Miami Dolphins head coach Mike McDaniel admitted Wednesday that he is torn between rooting for the local Miami Heat and the Denver Nuggets in the upcoming NBA Finals. McDaniel, who is entering his second season as head coach in Miami, is a native of Aurora, Colo.
While McDaniel professed that he loves the Nuggets as a native of the greater Denver area -- comparing it to the feeling of being a parent to multiple children -- he admitted that he is leaning towards rooting for the Heat, given the relationship that he has built with Erik Spoelstra's coaching staff and the access that he has had to them.
According to NFL.com, McDaniel has been courtside for several Heat games this season.
"Getting to know them, following their journey and getting to know the people you know I've become extremely invested," McDaniel told reporters. "So I don't lose any sleep by saying you know what, Denver Nuggets, why don't we wait 48 years? Not 47. So that's kind of where I stand on that."
The Heat are one of two South Beach teams who will be competing for a championship in June, as the NHL's Florida Panthers advanced to the Stanley Cup Final. That puts a great deal of pressure on the Dolphins, who have gone a full half century since their last championship triumph in Super Bowl VIII and have not been to a Super Bowl or a conference championship since 1984.
The Dolphins' last shot at a championship came in Super Bowl XIX, which they lost 38-16 to the San Francisco 49ers.