Ask Gary: Has the NBA considered Tampa Bay?

by Gary Shelton on November 7, 2015 · 2 comments

in Baseball, Florida, Florida State University, general, NFL, Tampa Bay Bucs, Tampa Bay Lightning, Tampa Bay Rays

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Saturday, 6 a.m.

(Each week, the readers take over and play Ask Gary. They send in a question, or a couple, and we all talk about the world of sports.  Think of it as a radio show where you don't have to be on hold. Join us and ask a question, make a comment or be funny. Send the questions to

During your decades of covering sports in the Tampa Bay, has there been a time that the area came close to landing an NBA franchise?  When Orlando was awarded a franchise, did that kill Tampa’s chances of landing a franchise for the foreseeable future, or are there still groups working behind the scenes trying to make it happen?  I would love to see the NBA in Tampa, and would buy season tickets.

Scott McPherson

Except for a few fans wishing that Tampa had a team, there hasn't been serious talk about it for a long time. There was some discussion before the Orlando Magic was formed in 1989 that a franchise might fit better here, but that was before baseball and hockey. There was a time around the 2001 season when the Magic was having trouble getting an arena, but nothing came of it.

I'm not sure Tampa can support the three pro franchises it has, let alone a fourth. I just don't know that there is that much money here, let alone that many sponsors.

As for the Magic, they would probably have something to say about a franchise so

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