That’s because according to the official team website, longtime TV analyst Tony Fiorentino, who has been with the Heat since they came into the league, will begin his 15th and final season as a member of the television broadcasting team when the team opens the 2017-18 NBA season.
Fiorentino, also known as “The Coach” to Heat fans, took over for Mike Fratello early in the 2004-05 season and has been paired with play-by-play announcer Eric Reid ever since. The duo has been the voice of the Heat for most of the 2000s, including the team’s three NBA Championship titles.
“I never would have imagined that I would spend 15 years on the air as a HEAT broadcaster and be approaching my 30th season with the club,” said Fiorentino. “Calling the games, especially during the three Championship seasons, was a fantastic experience. I’ve worn many hats during my time with the HEAT and I’ll continue to represent my team and interact with HEAT Nation in my ‘not so new’ role.”
Before Fiorentino became a TV staple, he was known for his job as an assistant coach for the inaugural 1988-89 Heat team. In the years between, the dynamic coach has served in numerous capacities, including scouting and being lead assistant coach for the Miami SOL of the WNBA.
Although he’ll be stepping away from the broadcasting booth, the veteran will serve as both a Heat ambassador and director of the franchise’s summer basketball camp program after next season. Despite not being a popular visual, Fiorentino’s voice will forever be sketched into the franchise’s history and will be remembered as a true “Heat Lifer.”