A look at Miami Dolphins curses
By Brian Miller
Joe Robbie Stadium
Fans today still refer to Sun-Life Stadium as JRS. Joe Robbie Stadium was built with private funds mostly supplied by original owner Joe Robbie. The Dolphins found success at the Orange Bowl and played competitively throughout the JRS years. Then, Joe Robbie passed away and the team was sold to businessman Wayne Huizenga.
For much of Huizenga’s years, nothing really changed. Shula of course retired, Marino retired, but the team began to falter shortly after he sold the naming rights of Joe Robbie Stadium to Pro-Player apparel.
Naming of the stadium has changed considerably over the years and the Dolphins have tried in vain to find a permanent name for the stadium that has since changed hands to Stephen Ross. The teams demise can be traced back to 1996. Don Shula “retired” the year before but in 1996, the Dolphins changed their logo and sold the rights of the stadium name to Pro-Player. The Dolphins have not been the same team since.
The irony of all this is that the Pro-Player apparel company would find themselves having money issues. The brand which once held an NFL team license and was a popular brand of the NFL would lose it’s branding and their products would soon disappear. The company would have to reorganize. That would all happen before the end of the Pro-Player Stadium agreement in 2005.
From 2005 to 2010 the Dolphins would play in Dolphins Stadium, Dolphin Stadium, and LandShark Stadium. In 2010 the Dolphins sold the stadium rights once again to Canadian based bank Sun-Life Financial. Sun-Life was trying to gain footing in the Florida market but eventually they pulled out all together but their name remains on the stadium. The contract is up at the end of the season.
Whatever the stadium has been called or will be called is one of the more entertaining curses that get discussed. Did Joe Robbie curse the team for taking his name off the stadium? Would putting it back on excise the demons that troll the stadium grounds? Would another Joe Robbie stadium free the ghosts that roam those halls?
The Dolphins display a statue of Joe Robbie outside of the stadium and since the statue was discovered in a storage unit, the Dolphins have actually started playing a little better. Perhaps the stadium holds more keys than we think.
If I’m Stephen Ross, I’m going to give this some thought. Perhaps Ross can rename the stadium, Joe Robbie Field at Some Corporate Stadium. Or maybe just let it be Some Corporate Field at Joe Robbie Stadium. Maybe, just maybe, we can then throw some salt over the shoulder, light a candle, and remove the pins from the voodoo dolls.