MIAMI GARDENS (CBSMiami) – Miami Dolphins training camp is just around the corner but this year, it’ll look and feel a lot different for both the players and the fans who come out to support the team.
That’s because the Dolphins are training in a brand new, state-of-the-art training facility built right next to Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, instead of their old facility at Nova Southeastern University in Davie, their home for nearly the last three decades.READ MORE: 2 Doral Police Officers Injured In Shooting Near Miami-Dade Police Headquarters; Suspect Killed ID'd By Police
All of the top brass from the Dolphins organization was on hand Tuesday for the official ribbon cutting, including owner Steve Ross and head coach Brian Flores.
WATCH: The ribbon cutting
“It’s like a dream come true for me,” said Ross. “We traveled the country, saw the best of all the teams and put it together. Hopefully, the players will be inspired to win.”.
It would be hard not to be inspired. The complex includes two outdoor practice fields — one grass and the other an artificial surface — and one indoor field. Covered seating will hold up to 2,200 fans during training camp. Inside there are lounge areas and 209 televisions.
There’s also an oversized weight room, luxurious locker room, Players’ Lounge with a barber chair and heated, lap pool and water treadmill.
There are two auditoriums and a dining room with a capacity of 158. The indoor training area includes four pools.
Coach Brian Flores said his players are excited about their new digs, and he credited Ross and team president Tom Garfinkel.
“They had a vision,” Flores said. “Today is the realization of that vision.”
Former legendary quarterback Dan Marino, who still works with the team as a Special Advisor, said the team’s training facility has come a long way over the years.
“It was amazing. I mean think about the size of the weight room. You go back to St. Thomas, we used to have chicken wire with two by fours and little nails to hang our clothes on and it’s a lot different now. This is the way, you know, the way the world is, the way the league is and it’s awesome,” said Marino to CBS4’s Jim Berry.
WATCH: Dan Marino on Dolphins new training facility
So what would legendary football coach and Pro Football Hall of Famer Don Shula think about the new facility?
“He would go crazy. He would love it,” said Marino. “But the fact that at St. Thomas, we had none of this, I mean, it was not even close, right. And we were able to do some good things there. So he would adapt and adjust and make sure that we were a good thing.”
Marino said it’s important to have the best facilities in order to attract the best players.
“There’s no doubt, if you have the best facilities, you know, players are going to want to want to be at the best place they can possibly, to take care of the body and win games and all that. so it’ll make a difference.”READ MORE: Shot Doral Police Officer In Serious But Stable Condition, Second Officer Recovering
So what’s going to attract them?
How about a “sauna, steam room, lap pool, cryotherapy, all that stuff,” said Marino. “I gotta use it all.”
Owner Steve Ross spent approximately $135 million to build the new 227,000 square foot facility which also includes an oversized indoor playground slide.
WATCH: CBS4’s Jim Berry checks out the giant slide and gets a little stuck.
Even though Jim Berry got stuck on the slide, Steve Ross hopes the Dolphins, get unstuck and break through to that championship level and soon.
“If you can’t win with a facility like this, you’re never going to win,” he said.
Former wide receiver O.J. McDuffie believes it’s a winning facility. It’s so nice, he joked, he would would take the field again for at least one play, in order to work out there.
WATCH: Jim Berry talks to O.J. McDuffie
The Dolphins will host 14 training camp practices that are open to the public.
The first is Saturday, July 31. Attendance is free but you must reserve tickets by clicking here.
Remember, CBS4 is your official Dolphins Station.
Be sure to join us for Camp Dolphins. Our daily Camp reports kickoff Wednesday July 28, following the late news every week night, leading up to the first preseason game which will also air on CBS4 with the rest of the preseason action.
Here’s the lineup.
- Preseason Week 1: Aug. 14 – Dolphins @ Bears 1 p.m. (on CBS4)
- Preseason Week 2: Aug. 21 – Dolphins vs. Falcons 7 p.m. (on CBS4)
- Preseason Week 3: Aug. 29 – Dolphins @ Bengals 4 p.m. (on CBS4)
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