Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Very little separates Tampa Bay Storm from Orlando Predators

Travis Coleman, bottom, strips the Storm’s Huey Whittaker in a 63-61 May 6 win that gives Orlando a 24-23 series lead.

Orlando Sentinel

Travis Coleman, bottom, strips the Storm’s Huey Whittaker in a 63-61 May 6 win that gives Orlando a 24-23 series lead.

TAMPA — Tampa Bay and Orlando resume their biannual "War on I-4" on Friday at the St. Pete Times Forum. How close has this rivalry been?

The Predators lead the series 24-23, including their 63-61 win on May 6. The Storm has scored just seven more points, 2,100-2,093. The teams have met seven times in the postseason with the Predators leading 4-3. And each team has defeated the other once to win the ArenaBowl.

Tampa Bay (5-7), which set a season high for points in Saturday's 62-55 win against visiting Pittsburgh, will have its hands full Friday. Orlando (8-4) has the Arena League's best offense, averaging 324.6 yards. QB Nick Hill is second in the league at 300.4 yards passing and has rushed for 343 yards, which is tops among quarterbacks and second overall.

Orlando also ranks first in the league with 29 interceptions, and DB Rayshaun Kizer is second with 12.

Breaking out: Tampa Bay QB Brian Zbydniewski was named the league's co-offensive player of the week for his performance against Pittsburgh. Zbydniewski was 24-of-34 for 372 yards and eight touchdowns. The yards, touchdowns and completion percentage (70.6) were career bests.

Record watch: Storm LB Cliff Dukes didn't get a sack against Pittsburgh, leaving the three-year veteran with 111/2 this season. Dukes, who went into the Pittsburgh game with sacks in three consecutive games, remains four shy of the league record with six games to play.

Transactions: OL George Bussey went on injured reserve with a right MCL sprain. Bussey is the third offensive lineman to land on IR, following Tom Kaleita and Manny Akah (knee sprains). Akah is eligible to return this week, but his availability for Friday won't be determined until tonight. DL Jarriett Buie, who was suspended for the Pittsburgh game, will take Bussey's roster spot.

Rankings: Jacksonville, which hosts the Storm on June 25, continues to sit atop the weekly coaches top 10 poll. The Sharks, whose 11-game winning streak is one shy of the league record, is No. 1 for the seventh consecutive week. The Predators are fourth. The Storm isn't ranked.

.Up next

Storm vs. Orlando

When/where: 8 p.m. Friday; St. Pete Times Forum, Tampa

TV/radio: NFL Network; 1250-AM

Tickets: (813) 301-6600;

Very little separates Tampa Bay Storm from Orlando Predators 06/15/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 15, 2011 9:53pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. On the defensive: Heisman history not in Derwin James' favor


    The lowdown on Derwin James? "No offense to (Michigan's Jabrill) Peppers (a Heisman finalist last year)," ESPN analyst Rex Ryan says, "but he only wished he was the player this kid was." (Monica Herndon, Times)
  2. Kevin Kiermaier: Return to action Thursday 'didn't set the world on fire'

    The Heater

    Rays center fielder Kevin Kiermaier's return from the hip injury that sidelined him since June 8 could have gone better Thursday in Port Charlotte. He broke two bats and went hitless in two at bats while playing for the Class A Charlotte Stone Crabs.

    Kevin Kiermaier takes cuts in the cage during batting practice before the game between the Rays and Texas Rangers Saturday at Tropicana Field. [WILL VRAGOVIC   |   Times]
  3. What you need to know about Bucs training camp


    Bucs training camp is here.

    This morning was the first of 13 practices that are free and open to the general public, so we have all the details to answer your questions about where and when and so on.

    Dirk Koetter is nothing if not precise, with practices starting at 8:45 a.m. and running until 10:27. [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]
  4. Fennelly: It's high time for Bucs to take Tampa Bay back


    TAMPA — Welcome to the proving ground.

    Bucs training camp begins today.

    Hard Knocks and flop sweat.

    Work and more work.

    "We have a lot to prove,'' wide receiver Mike Evans (13) says. "We're good on paper, but we've got to do it." [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]
  5. HomeTeam 100: Players 1-10


    When he's not holding things down on the O-line, Nicholas Petit-Frere is holding his own in the classroom with a 3.7 grade-point average. (Andres Leiva, Times)