MIAMI -- As Miami Heat fans flowed toward AmericanAirlines Arena on Tuesday evening, with the light fading into that lustrous glow that attracts photographers and supermodels the world over, many in the crowd streamed around a Biscayne Boulevard condominium that had a sign on a lower floor that read: "No Stadium in the Park."
The message, of course, was aimed soccer star David Beckham's controversial plan to build a stadium on a grassy plot between the arena and the beautiful Perez Art Museum Miami.
The other message, of course, is that Miami is a city with enough confidence to say no to a pop-culture superstar like Beckham. No matter what happened inside the arena Tuesday night, that's a win.
Nearby, the harder side of the city was in full effect. Posters haphazardly glued to random light posts announced that Miami rapper Rick Ross' new album, "Mastermind," is in stores. To reinforce the message, a truck rolled by with Ross glowering from the side.
Inside the arena, Ross loomed large in his courtside seat near the Spurs bench. The Miami native was dressed defiantly in all black – because he can – and no doubt distracted a few shooters in a glittering gold bracelet that could double as a collar for a small, strong dog. The massive gold chain slung around his neck could have been used to power a large motorcycle.
Ross, whose seat was so good that he spent portions of the game looking at Spurs Coach Gregg Popovich's rear end, was with Miami's DJ Khaled, in red Alonzo Mourning jersey and matching shoes. Khaled will not be at Thursday's game because he has a date at the BB&T Center with Kendrick Lamar, Trey Songz, Future and others.
ALSO IN THE CROWD
Elsewhere, the celebrity royalty that a Miami Heat playoff game is supposed to attract actually showed up this time.
Mike Tyson was a conservative presence in his second row, midcourt seat, looking relaxed in a soft blue short-sleeve button-down. Only in Miami could Tyson look like just another guy.
Another all-time great boxer, middleweight champ Floyd Mayweather, sat impassively with actor and all-time Miami nightlife legend Jamie Foxx.
Our Jack Nicholson, Jimmy Buffett, was in his customary spot along the baseline, as always within shouting distance of Gloria Estefan behind the basket.
Dwyane Wade's Gabrielle Union was fashionably early and radiant in a sleeveless white crocheted pantsuit.
Lenny Kravitz, in a cool, vanilla sportcoat and adorned with a young, leggy protege, again defied the rule that no man can wear sunglasses at night without looking like a dork.
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