I advanced approximately $1,000—not $11,000—to cover player per-diem expenses for the Miami Dolphins' trip to San Diego in August of 1966.
A pardonable error, but, if uncorrected, the suspicion remains that Joe Robbie will consider it additional evidence of the "conspiracy" against him.
Buffalo Trotting Association
After reading Mark Kram's article I find myself pleased that Mr. Kram did not choose to become a judge in a court of law. If this article is any indication, looking fairly at both sides of a situation is not one of Mr. Kram's strong points.
Joe Robbie, as seen by Harry Q. Dolphin-fan, is many things. "An unheeled prairie lawyer," though, is hardly a fit description.
Not always the stablest franchise, the Miami Dolphins have always met their bills. How can Mr. Kram call the Dolphins' franchise "the cheapest in sports history" when in 1966, the first year of operation (and when still at war with the NFL), the Dolphins signed Kentucky's quarterback, Rick Norton, for $300,000 and Tennessee's linebacker, Frank Emanuel, for $400,000?
In an article in the Miami Herald on Dec. 13 Joe Robbie is quoted as saying, "I spoke to those people [from SI] in good faith. I even supplied them with the picture of Flipper and Danny Thomas that they used to illustrate the story. They told me an altogether different version of their story than it turned out to be. As it turned out, their product is irresponsible, inaccurate and totally unfair."
To hold Mr. Robbie responsible for everything from the young Dolphins' growing pains to the fact that he is Lebanese is ridiculous, and it shows that to print this article SI has to be bush.
According to the Herald article, your reporters interviewed Head Coach George Wilson and Quarterbacks Rick Norton and Bob Griese extensively, yet printed none of this. Mr. Robbie's good qualities, contrary to what you would think after reading the article, are many. The absence of any mention of them, on top of everything else, indeed, makes for an "irresponsible, inaccurate and totally unfair" article.
I would like to express my personal thanks to Mr. Robbie for giving Miami professional football. I'm sure many others share my sentiment. This man has stuck with the Dolphins through defeat after defeat. And he always has a fresh attitude toward each game. He isn't a loser. Miami wants a winner, and in a few years we will have one. Then whom will we have to thank for it? Joseph Robbie, that's who!
For Joe Robbie to leave little Sisseton, S. Dak. and become owner of the Miami Dolphins is incredible; for him to be castigated in a SPORTS ILLUSTRATED article is remarkable; for Mark Kram to write that biting article is regrettable.