TAMPA — The St. Pete Times Forum will undergo a summer makeover in order to complete renovations in time for the Lightning's NHL season opener, and Storm fans attending Friday night's game against New Orleans will notice some alterations.
The box office will be closed during the renovation, and temporary ticket booths will be set up starting at 9 a.m. only on day-of-game and event dates. Those will be located near the parking garage on the west plaza. Fans can also purchase tickets through ticketmaster.com or by calling toll-free 1-800-745-3000.
Medallions restaurant, Icons lounge and Shots at Channelside will also be closed during the renovation.
STINGLEY OUT: The VooDoo comes to town with a new coach, Jon Norris, after firing Derek Stingley on Sunday. New Orleans was a league-worst 2-12 under Stingley, 0-8 at home, and is coming off a 75-54 loss to visiting Spokane last week.
RECORD WATCH: Cliff Dukes didn't record a sack last week against the Shark, leaving him with 12½ for the season, three off the single-season league record with four games to play. New Orleans should provide a good chance to increase his total: The VooDoo is second-to-last in the AFL in sacks allowed.
INJURIES: DB Marcus Udell (shoulder) and OL Manny Akah (back) were injured against Jacksonville. Neither player returned against Jacksonville, and their status for New Orleans is questionable.
RECORD-SETTING NIGHT: Jacksonville QB Aaron Garcia has spent the season carving up the league, and Saturday against the Storm was no exception. Garcia completed 22 passes against Tampa Bay, setting the AFL record for career completions with 3,887.
JACKSON ON A TEAR: Over the past three weeks, no AFL receiver has been more productive than Amarri Jackson. The former USF standout has more catches (36), yards (496) and touchdowns (12) than any other wideout in the league.
PLAYOFF PICTURE: The Storm is still clinging to playoff hopes, but it will need help to reach the postseason.
The Storm is 6-8. The team most likely in its sights is Orlando, which currently holds the No. 4 seed in the American Conference at 8-6.
A MILLION STRONG: The AFL welcomed its one millionth fan this past week in Chicago. This is the 15th time in 24 years the league has topped that plateau. Last year, the league drew 976, 307. The Storm is currently second in the AFL in 2011 attendance, averaging 10,758.