As a young boy, Ronald J Williams always loved sports, both watching and playing. He was very active growing up and played football, basketball, golf and racquetball.
Ronald still loves sports today, but now he prefers watching them more than he does playing them. Ronald’s favorite teams growing up were The Minnesota Vikings and Minnesota Twins and while they are still number one in his eyes, he has also added the Miami Heat and the Miami Dolphins to his list of favorite teams and Dan Marino as one of his favorite players. Below are some of insights from Ronald J Williams on his favorite teams. For additional insights, be sure to follow Ronald J Williams on Twitter.
The Minnesota Twins
The Minnesota Twins are a Major League Baseball team in the American League central division. They were founded in 1901 as the Washington Senators and were one of the original eight teams of the American League. The franchise remained in Washington DC until 1961 when they moved to Minnesota. They are based out of Minneapolis and play their home games at Target Field. The Twins played in the western division from 1969 to 1993 and in the central division from 1994 to present.
Over the history of the franchise, the Twins have won three World Series titles, in 1924 as the Senators and in 1987 and 1991. They have also claimed six AL pennants along with 10 divisional titles.
After a dominant run from 2002 to 2010 in which they won six division titles, the Twins have struggled, posting five seasons of 70 of fewer victories. They are coming off a 59-win season, their worst since 1955.
The proud franchise has several Hall of Famer members, including Bert Blyleven, Rod Carew, Kirby Puckett, Harmon Killebrew, Walter Johnson and Goose Goslin.
Another favorite team of Ronald J Williams is the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings are based out of Minneapolis, MN and were an NFL expansion team in 1960 playing their first game in 1961 in the NFL’s Western Conference. It wasn’t until 1970, that the Vikings began to play in the National Football Conference Central Division and later moved to the Northern Division in 2002. Today, the Minnesota Vikings play their home games at the US Bank Stadium located in Minneapolis, MN. Prior to playing there, they have played their home games at the Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington, the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis.
The Vikings had one league championship in 1969 when they defeated the Cleveland Browns in the last NFL Championship before the merger. They dominated their division from 1968 through 1980, winning 11 division titles with a dominant defense and stellar offense led by quarterback Fran Tarkenton and running back Chuck Foreman.
The team added numerous division titles in the 1980’s and 1990’s but came up short in the playoffs, failing to win the NFC Championship in any season. More recently the team has struggled, for the most part, posting sub- .500 records in eight of their past 15 seasons.
Hall of Famers Fran Tarkenton, Paul Krause, Mick Tinglehoff, Chris Doleman, Cris Carter, Carl Eller, Alan Page and John Randle all wore the Viking purple.
Currently, the Vikings are coming off an 8-8 season behind quarterback Sam Bradford, who was obtained the Teddy Bridgewater, went down with an injury. The Vikings also played most of the season without the best running back in franchise history. Adrian Peterson, who was down with an injury and has since moved on.
Miami is the home to two of the country’s top-notch team sports franchises, the Dolphins of the NFL and The Heat of the NBA. Together, these two franchises have gone on to win five championships and 25 division titles. Let me start with the Miami Dolphins.
The Miami Dolphins, Florida’s oldest professional sports team, joined the AFL in 1966 and joined the NFL in 1970 when the merger between the AFL and the NFL took place. They have been playing in the AFC Eastern Conference ever since that time and quickly became the league’s powerhouse in 1971 when the Dolphins won the AFC Championship behind quarterback Bob Griese, running back Larry Csonka and head coach Don Shula. While they, unfortunately, fell in the Super Bowl, they still went on to become one of the best teams in NFL history. In 1972, the Miami Dolphins compiled a 17-0 record (including playoffs) and remain the only undefeated team in league history. The team featured future Hall of Famers Jim Langer, Larry Little, Paul Warfield, Nick Buoniconti, Bob Griese and Larry Csonka.
While the Dolphins were solid the rest of the 1970’s, they failed to make the postseason from 1975-1977. Their new era began in 1983 when Dolphins picked up quarterback Dan Marino. In 1984, Marino, who was last picked in the first round draft of 1983, led his team to the AFC Championship sporting 48 touchdown passes. Although they did not go on to win the super bowl that year, Dan Marino, along with wide receivers Mark Duper and Mark Clayton, helped lead the Dolphins to five division championships and ten playoff appearances. The only thing missing in the Hall of Famer’s career was a Super Bowl title.
Marino retired after his 1999 season, but the Dolphins continued to be a force on the field, averaging 10 wins a year for the next three season. While tough times have not eluded them, the Miami Dolphins have stayed the course posting 10 wins last season, giving fans something to look forward to this season.
The Miami Heat was established in 1987 after the NBA granted Miami one of its 4 expansion teams. The Heat first took the court in 1988, and while they definitely experienced their fair share of growing pains, winning only 57 games over the first three seasons, but quickly found their groove making the playoffs for the first time in 1991-1992, despite finishing with a sub-.500 record.
The Heat later began a six-season playoff run in 1995 under the direction of head coach Pat Riley and later began a new era with the arrival of guard Dwyane Wade. In Wade’s second season the Heat advanced to the conference finals and in just three seasons, the Heat were on top of the basketball world, with their first NBA Championship in 2005-2006.
Following a few seasons of either first round playoff defeats or missing the playoffs altogether, the Heat once again became dominant in 2010 with the arrival of Chris Bosh and LeBron James. While the Heat lost in the NBA Finals in 2011, they went on to claim back-to-back titles in 2012 and 2013. After another appearance in the NBA Finals in 2014, the Heat fell off the map when James opted out of his contract and decided to return to Cleveland.
The Heat are currently coming off a .500 season, missing the playoffs for the second time in the last three seasons.
Hall of Famers who have also played for the Heat are Shaquille O’Neal, Gary Payton and Alonzo Mourning.