MLS Back In Florida?

Discussion in 'Inter Miami CF' started by WorldGame, Aug 29, 2002.

  1. WorldGame

    WorldGame Member

    Aug 28, 2002
    What is the latest on pro soccer making a move back into Florida? What have you heard?

    I've been over to Tampa for matches, and down to Miami, too. Admittedly, the matches in Tampa were to watch United, or Miami. But I still dig the idea of soccer in Tampa, as I was a five year old Rowdies fan in the mid-70s.

    With all this talk of new clubs, and expansion - what is the poop on clubs in Florida? (and any murmurs of a club in Orlando, by any remote chance?)
  2. jmeissen0

    jmeissen0 New Member

    Mar 31, 2001
    page 1078
    at this point, it seems that the only pro sport that does well there is the nfl

    i don't think the league has any intention of going back anytime soon, but make some noise... anything is possibly, i suppose

    and weclome to bigsoccer
  3. Wallydrag

    Wallydrag BigSoccer Supporter

    Jul 24, 2002
    Oklahoma City
    FC Dallas
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    I'd say don't expect the MLS in Florida any time soon, especially Miami. Miami has traditionally been a poor sports town. The Dolphins are the only ones that come close to really having great support. Everyone else is kinda "Eh". Marlins don't draw anything. Does anyone really care about the Heat? And look at the U of Miami. They had a national champ team last season but they could never sell out hardly any of their games in the Orange Bowl. You'd watch on TV and there were so many empty seats all over the place.

    Miami is a place to wear bikinis and pink and seafoam green outfits. Where you drive fast, shiny new cars and hang out at the beach. Where you can see and be seen. Go dancing at night, roam South Beach and have fun. But go to sporting events? Not so much. There's just too much other stuff to do I guess.
  4. soccerdome

    soccerdome New Member

    Small can be good

    If there was an expansion to Florida, it should be in a smaller town or city (but not too small.) Places where people literally have to travel to other cities to see pro sports live, like Miami or Tampa, forsay. Then maybe many folks will become interested in this new "home town team." Tallahassee (is that spelled right?) is my first bid. Any others?
  5. jdm2662

    jdm2662 New Member

    Aug 6, 2002
    Hillside, IL
    Lets not forget the Dolphins failed to sell out their home playoff game last season. That's pathetic since the Dolphins are the only pro sports team in Florida with tradition. The Bucs have it, but that's for years and years of losing...
  6. soccerdome

    soccerdome New Member

    Even more the reason to agree with my post above. :)
  7. WorldGame

    WorldGame Member

    Aug 28, 2002
    Unfortunately, I, like most other sports fans in Florida I would guess, am very familiar with the statmements made re: sports in Florida. And I'm sure not going to defend any of the organizations but I will offer one somewhat widely held opinion by sports fans around here and that is that most team organizations don't promote their teams well enough, or even enough period. for whatever reason they seem to assume that there's such a massive flow of people through this state for so many different reasons that there would just always be plenty of traffic to fill their stadiums and arenas. The Orlando Magic are in the latter stages of learning that lesson the hard way - that they can't just put a team on the floor and expect the O-rena to sell out every game for the rest of time.

    BUT - - I have this small belief that once that realization becomes more common, it may become possible for teams to be more viable here; ie: they come with a sound business model of something other than, 'put on the show and the crowds will show up' when in actuality those crowds want a good team with a future to cheer for, even if their record isn't the best. Unfortunately, the two MLS clubs didn't get a chance for long enough to build on their good traits and fix their problems.

    So that small belief, and I know in this case it's absolutely microscopic, I have includes the possibility of an MLS club surviving and prospering in Orlando by building on the huge number of families in the area and the less disperate community there is here as opposed to, say Miami, or even Tampa to a lesser extent (the little truth is that there is a city here, and very few of us have anything to do with theme parks and Disney).

    Ultimately, I just hold out hope while supporting my PDL club each season - and making sure the local cable system keeps fox sports world in their lineup.
  8. soccerdome

    soccerdome New Member

    So your basically saying Orlando would be the best place for MLS in Florida. Verdad?
  9. WorldGame

    WorldGame Member

    Aug 28, 2002
    I see it as one main pair of pro and con:

    con = tampa has a history of soccer back to the nasl which means almost 30 years; and miami and south florida has nearly as much. the point being that when pro sports looks for a viable, read: money making, market for a franchise they look for existing and/or proven consumers. so in that sense, the other two would have a lead on Orlando, in my opinion.


    pro = the current construct of soccer seems to be tapping into the vast market of the suburbs and all the weekend soccer clubs for all the little kids, and in Orlando on any given weekend you can't 'swing a dead cat' without hitting half a dozen family caravans full of grade schoolers and their parents on their way to the neighborhood pitch.

    Like I said, it's a slim shot and I hold no expectations or anything. I just think there is a not-impossible case to be made.

    Put it like this: if I personally had the start-up funds, MLS would only be looking for three and not four expansion sites, because I/we in Orlando would be busy deciding what to name our club (FC Orlando or something simple and traditional, nothing dumb!) and planning a nice juicy rivalry with United or Metrostars.
  10. skeeinfree

    skeeinfree New Member

    Aug 11, 2000
    Southern California
    can anyone say A-league? or maybe its better to start at pdl
  11. WorldGame

    WorldGame Member

    Aug 28, 2002
    there are at least half a dozen PDL clubs in Florida, including one in Orlando. I don't think there are any A-league clubs in the entire state, presently.
  12. Stuart

    Stuart New Member

    Oct 13, 2001
    I don't think that is correct. They failed to sell-out in time to prevent a local blackout, but did in fact sellout on game day. You have to understand that in Miami, people are much more laid back and don't tend to buy tickets (or do anything) until the very last minute.
  13. snowfx2

    snowfx2 New Member

    Jul 28, 2001
    so cal
    Exactly the same with people here in Southern California, except for the Lakers.
  14. soccerdome

    soccerdome New Member

    It's not that way in Chicago at all. I think MLS will have to adjust to that, depending on the city. But, I guess that's OK as long as people are at least buying the tickets. That's what really matters.
  15. USAsoccer

    USAsoccer Member

    Jul 15, 1999
    Tampa, Florida
    Just the Facts about Tampa

    Tampa: Largest TV market in the State (at 13 nationally)

    (Compare with Miami/Fort Lauderdale at 17 and Orlando at 20)

    Pro Sports:

    BUCS: Soldout, with 45,000 season ticket waiting list. Bucs set an NFL record for futility losing 26 of first 28. Went 14 years in row (83-96) where the team lost 10 or more games a season. Presently, they have been to playoffs 4 out the last 5 years. See what winning can do!

    Lightning: 20th in NHL attendence last year (out of 30 teams, over 16,000 a game) in spite of 9 out 10 seasons with losing record (6 in a row), and an NHL record of 4 years straight with 50 plus losses. Holds NHL record crowd 1 through 10. Also holds NHL playoff record crowds 1 and 2 (only had two home playoff games in franchise history). Season ticket sales for this year up 20 percent. When the lightning played good hockey, the team sold out regularly.

    D-Rays: 28th out 30. Only Miami and Montreal are worse. Attendence down 20 percent this year to 13,500 a game. Team is set to lose over 100 games for the 4th time in 5 years. Not bad, in fact, very Buc like!

    Now to Soccer! It was NOT from a lack of support that the Mutiny went away. The teams attendence increased in its last season almost 20 percent in spite of setting an all time MLS record for futility by winning only 2 games in an entire season (A Tampa Pro sport tradition, see BUCS, LIGHTNING AND D-RAYS ABOVE).

    The lease with the staduim required that the first 2 million in concession went straight to the BUCS. 50/50 split thereafter. Rent cost the Mutiny 75,000 a game (or almost another cool million per year). All parking went to the BUCS. In spite of this, the Mutiny only lost 3 million in its last season (the amount of concessions, parking and rent on the staduim).

    George Steinbrener wanted to buy the Mutiny, but could not escape the lease agreement with the Tampa Sports Authority.

    Rumor is that Steinbrener's kid is a huge soccer fan, and is considering a Soccer Specific Stadium near the Yankee Spring Training Complex. If so, MLS might be coming back sooner than most of you think.....
  16. WorldGame

    WorldGame Member

    Aug 28, 2002
    Re: Just the Facts about Tampa

    I always heard the stadium deal was a killer and that the mutiny were getting screwed. that really stunk, too, because I drove over from Orlando half a dozen times during the 2000 and 2001 seasons for matches (to cheer for United and Fusion, among others but what the heck - I bought stuff at the stadium and left cash in tampa).

    so here's what you folks over in tampa need do when(!) you get your club back: follow the Buc's lead and remember you have lots of potential paying fans on the other end of I-4 in Orlando. come over here and sell us season ticket deals and whatnot, since you'd be the only club in the state (I hear miami won't happen again for a long time), but just don't ignore all the other people who might be the difference between a full SSS and a partly full one. and for heaven's sake please get a new name. or don't - - frankly you can call yourselves the tampa bay taliban for all I care, just get your team back so we can drive over and support the club along with you!

    (one question: what ever happened to devon barclay? he has to've been the fastest man I've ever seen on any sports field; solid young player, too)
  17. jdm2662

    jdm2662 New Member

    Aug 6, 2002
    Hillside, IL
    Didn't George want to buy the Metros, but it went through?
  18. fusionmansteve

    fusionmansteve New Member

    Jun 9, 2000
    Waiting in Lockhart parking lot.....
    Miami FC
    World Game, come on, where's your source? ("I hear Miami won't happen again for a long time") this magnificent source.

    Know what I hear (and see every day passing along on commericial blvd)? That we have the SSS that MLS covets, ready and rarin' to go again....all we need is an I/O. I believe Tampa needs....BOTH.

    Can your Miami-kaboshing, wishful brand of thinking.
    Until you've got the ready-made facility, you're behind the 8-ball.

    Now if I (we, hell--the rest of the country) could only find a willing I/O to bankroll our masochistic fascination with local professional soccer....
  19. river

    river Member

    Aug 12, 2001
    Cooper City
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
  20. DixieDean

    DixieDean New Member

    Jun 4, 2004
    Nassau, Bahamas
    Major thread bump-age. :D

    Is'nt the thread about MLS and not MISL?

    p.s. although not D1, Miami FC joined USL 1 this year averaging around 2,000 ~ 4,000 thus far.
  21. river

    river Member

    Aug 12, 2001
    Cooper City
    Philadelphia Union
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Sorry! I thought I posted in the Miami thread.

    I won't post here anymore!
    C ya!

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