Thursday, June 21, 2018
News Roundup

News at noon: David Bowie; Powerball fever; circus elephants retire early; national college football championship; 2 hour wait for sushi

"In certain musical circles, there is no higher compliment than a comparison to David Bowie." Jay Cridlin wrote those words Sunday in a review of Bowie's new album Blackstar, released Friday, the singer's 69th birthday. Bowie died Sunday, and Cridlin's review became part of an obituary. Also, our photo gallery looks at Bowie through the years.

Wednesday's Powerball jackpot, likely to exceed $1.4 billion, has us thinking back on winners whose luck didn't stick. In Tampa Bay, one man embodies that sad narrative better than any other: Abraham Shakespeare. The illiterate, occasional sanitation worker from Lakeland won a $17 million jackpot in 2006. When he died on April 6, 2009, he had just $14,000 left.

When the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus came to Tampa last weekend, local circus fans thought they'd have a couple more years to see the elephants perform before they retired. Turns out, it was the last time. The Associated Press reports that the circus is ending its elephant acts a year and a half early, and will retire all of its touring elephants in May. Previously, circus representatives had said the elephants would be phased out by 2018.

Innovation. It's an elusive word to define but every state's economy desperately wants to be known as innovative. It's a 21st century thing. Too bad, then, that Florida isn't there yet. According to a Bloomberg News analysis, Florida is 35th among the 50 states on its state innovation index.

The innovation ranking doesn't appear to be slowing tourists at all. The tourism industry in Tampa Bay thrived in 2015. Hillsborough County bed tax collections reached nearly $2 million for November, which broke a record by more than 14.5 percent for the month that has stood since 2007, according to a news release from Visit Tampa Bay. Meanwhile, St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport saw more than 1.6 million passengers in 2015, a figure that broke the all-time passenger record previously set at the airport in 2004, according to a news release. Overall, passenger traffic was up 24 percent for the last month of the year.

Sen. Marco Rubio is expected to discuss economic policy when he appears in Sarasota this afternoon. It's a tricky thing, being Rubio these days. Polls show he's well-liked by Republican voters, and well-positioned to emerge as the establishment's top alternative to Donald Trump and Ted Cruz. But a slew of Rubio's competitors want to be that alternative too. He must fend them off while trying to appeal to Cruz and Trump supporters who have rewarded a far more strident campaign approach.

Follow our live coverage of the national championship football game between No. 1 Clemson and No. 2 Alabama. And as we wait for kickoff, here are 8 things you need to know.

If saving money on lunches was on of your New Year's resolutions, or if you just like to bring your lunch to work, here are 5 great sandwich ideas.

Steve Persall cautions us to keep one thing in mind about Sunday's stunning Golden Globes results, and the effect on Thursday's Academy Award nominations. They don't mean anything. He explains why.

A two-hour wait for sushi in Seminole? Yes! Osaka Sushi & Thai is jamming. And with good reason, says Laura Reiley. The vast lineup of specialty rolls benefits from vibrantly fresh fish, meticulously rolled, sauced and plated.

News at noon is a weekday feature from tampabay.com. Check in Monday through Friday for updates and information on the biggest stories of the day.

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Rays journal: 7 pitches, 3 straight homers prove too much in loss to Astros

Rays journal: 7 pitches, 3 straight homers prove too much in loss to Astros

HOUSTON — The Rays were engaged in a third straight tight, go-either-way battle with the defending champ Astros on Wednesday.Until they were not.A brutal seven-pitch sequence by starter Nathan Eovaldi changed everything, as he gave up three con...
Updated: 4 hours ago
The Daystarter: Victor Hedman is the NHL’s best (defender); how did 15 families sign a lease for the same home?; read the latest report on CareerSource

The Daystarter: Victor Hedman is the NHL’s best (defender); how did 15 families sign a lease for the same home?; read the latest report on CareerSource

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what to know today.• Today is also the official start of summer, not that anyone will be able to tell. It will be hot and muggy with just a 30 percent chance of rain heading into Friday, according to 10We...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Romano: Intrigue behind all those manicured lawns

Romano: Intrigue behind all those manicured lawns

I’ve always thought homeowners associations had a lot in common with cops.People love to complain about them and often accuse them of abusing their power. And yet as soon as a neighbor paints his house a hot shade of fuchsia, you’re screaming for the...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Rays see the results of keeping a good, young core group together

Rays see the results of keeping a good, young core group together

HOUSTON — The Rays saw a lot on the weeklong trip that ended with Wednesday's game against that Astros, beyond the street hustlers prowling in Times Square and the urban cowboys and girls parading through H-town.There was an impressive debuting...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Kevin Knox poised to become Tampa Bay’s highest NBA draft pick

Kevin Knox poised to become Tampa Bay’s highest NBA draft pick

Kevin Knox Sr. was watching the NFL draft 24 years ago when the phone rang. Buffalo coach Marv Levy was on the other line."Marv said they were taking me," said Knox Sr., a standout receiver at FSU.Soon after, Knox Sr. saw his name scroll across ESPN'...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Lightning’s Victor Hedman wins NHL’s Norris Trophy

Lightning’s Victor Hedman wins NHL’s Norris Trophy

Victor Hedman, a relentless part of the Lightning's push to the Eastern Conference final last season, was honored Wednesday night with the Norris Trophy, given to the NHL's top defenseman."To the Lightning organization, Mr. Jeff Vinik, Steve Yzerman ...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Wednesday’s Rays-Astros game

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Wednesday’s Rays-Astros game

RHP Nathan Eovaldi said before his rough start Wednesday against the Astros that he was pitching better than his numbers showed. Well … In four starts since his six no-hit innings debut, he's 0-3 with a 6.17 ERA, allowing eight homers, four Wed...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Report: Bucs QB Jameis Winston bracing for suspension from NFL

Report: Bucs QB Jameis Winston bracing for suspension from NFL

Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston could be suspended for up to three games  next season following the league's investigation into allegations he groped a female Uber driver in Arizona in 2016, a Tallahassee radio station reported.Jeff Cameron, a&#...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Passengers on fatal Southwest flight sue airline and manufacturers of plane and engine

Passengers on fatal Southwest flight sue airline and manufacturers of plane and engine

Eight passengers who were aboard a Southwest Airlines flight that was forced to make an emergency landing in Philadelphia after one of its engines blew apart filed suit Wednesday against the airline, Boeing and the companies that manufactured the eng...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Former employee sued by Tesla says he was a whistleblower

Former employee sued by Tesla says he was a whistleblower

Tesla sued a former employee Wednesday, accusing the man of hacking the automaker’s computer systems and stealing company secrets, shedding light on what chief Elon Musk had suggested was the work of a secretive internal saboteur.But the employee, Ma...
Updated: 7 hours ago