Nothing is likely to happen without MLS awarding the city an expansion franchise...which is unlikely to happen (IMHO) without the Rays deciding their future first. Neither the league nor the Rowdies like their prospects of drawing 20,000 fans to Downtown St. Pete if the Rays are still there, possibly in a new stadium.
Some tweeters suspect MLS loves the referendum news, solely because it ups the ante on other cities competing for expansion franchises:
But, as always...time will tell. In other recent sports business news:Rough translation: "Listen, we'd love to let you and everyone else in, but bidding wars is bidding wars, jack." https://t.co/HyoePUF0oB— Empty Seats Galore (@EmptySeatsPics) May 3, 2017
- Apparently Derek Jeter & Jeb Bush aren't quite ready to close on the Marlins yet...because, you know...leverage.
- Detroit's stadium "renaissance" is apparently only a renaissance for sports teams owners, who appear to be cannibalizing economy from the rest of the city.
- Lightning owner Jeff Vinik knows it pays to have friends in high places, as one of his pet projects, a Downtown Tampa USF Medical campus, is in line to get another $14M in state funding, while his downtown renovation project has gotten nothing but rubber stamps, even as he asks for a bit more public money.
- Rob Manfred just isn't very good at the saber-rattling thing...at least compared to Bud Selig. Manfred tried to pretend Las Vegas would be a possible relocation site for the Rays...but forgot the city just got new NFL and NHL teams and is probably already stretched too thin for a small market, given its limited disposable income. Just go back to the Montreal well, where it's safe, Commish.
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