George Lopez: One of comedy's best standup performers takes the stage at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater Saturday. $54.50-$65.
NCAA Women's Final Four: Celebrate the tournament being in Tampa at a party Friday at the Sail Pavilion on Tampa's Riverwalk with food trucks and a 9 p.m. fireworks show.
Shen Yun: Classically trained dancers and a full orchestra perform at the Mahaffey Theater at 8 p.m. Friday, and 2 and 8 p.m. Saturday, 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg. Price: $50.50-$202.50....
03/29/15 TV and Radio
Baseball, spring training Marlins at Mets 1 p.m. MLB Giants at Cubs 4 p.m. MLB Twins at Red Sox 7 p.m. MLB College basketball CBI final: La. Monroe at Loyola Chicago, Game 1 of three-game series 8 p.m. CBSSN College basketball, Women's NCAA Albany Region final: Connecticut vs. Dayton 7 p.m. ESPN Spokane Region final: Maryland vs. Tennessee 9:15 p.m. ESPN College softball Georgia at Tennessee 7 p.m. SEC High school basketball Powerade Jamfest 8 p.m. ESPN2 NBA Rockets at Raptors 7:30 p.m. NBA Suns at Trail Blazers 10 p.m. NBA NHL Lightning at Canadiens 7:30 p.m. Sun Sports; 970-AM Kings at Blackhawks 8:30 p.m. NBCSN Tennis Miami Open 11 a.m. Tennis Miami Open 10 p.m. Tennis
03/29/15 Local Government
TAMPA — One of the most unusual government gambles of late: Whether tweens and teens will forgo trick-or-treating to go see Taylor Swift at Raymond James Stadium.
The Tampa Sports Authority, four years into a plan to make more revenue by turning concert promoter, has put $2.75 million on the line: The guarantee it offered to land a date — Halloween night — on Swift's "1989 World Tour." So far, signs look good the bet will pay off. Swift's latest album is a hit, and ticket sales are climbing toward TSA's break-even point. But there's no predicting the weather, or some other act of God....
03/29/15 Auto racing
ST. PETERSBURG — Chip Ganassi Racing teammates Tony Kanaan and Scott Dixon are frequent contenders at the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.
They're the only drivers to compete in all 11 IndyCar races here and account for a combined four runnerup finishes on the downtown streets.
What they lack, still, is a victory in St. Petersburg.
Kanaan finished third Sunday behind Team Penske's Juan Pablo Montoya and Will Power. It was Kanaan's sixth podium (top-three run) in St. Petersburg....
TAMPA — A man died Sunday evening when he lost control of his motorcycle on U.S. Highway 301 and crashed, authorities said.
Charly Crespo-Parron, 18, of Tampa was riding north on U.S. 301 at a high rate of speed when he lost control and flipped the motorcycle several times before crashing into a utility pole on the east side of the highway, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.
Crespo-Parron was thrown from the motorcycle and died at the scene....
03/29/15 Auto racing
ST. PETERSBURG — The season-opening Grand Prix of St. Petersburg was only a lap in when fans got a view of a sight they should probably get used to seeing throughout the IndyCar Series season.
"Amazing the amount of stuff that fell off," runner-up and pole-sitter Will Power said. "Rabbit ears lying all around the track. It was just everywhere, right?"
The reason for the cars' carnage was because of the aero kits that debuted Sunday....
David Dixon and Jeff Speck are two of the best urban planners in the business.
That's why Jeff Vinik hired them.
The Tampa Bay Lightning owner is planning a $1 billion transformation of the downtown waterfront. He wants to spend the next decade turning 40 acres of empty land and existing development into a livable space that will appeal to two important demographics: millennials and empty nesters....
ST. PETERSBURG — In the cool shadow of the Mahaffey Theater, with white yachts in the bay to the left and the glittering Salvador Dalí Museum to the right, Bruce Yargeau sipped his beer and opened his arms. Below him, Indy cars thundered through the streets of St. Petersburg, zipping along the water's edge and sending echoes of the engines humming through the air.
"It's part of St. Pete," Yargeau said. "This venue is unbelievable. St. Pete better never get rid of this race."...
Even in nursing — a field dominated by women — men make a lot more money.
Ninety percent of registered nurses nationwide are female, yet they earn about $5,000 less every year than their male counterparts — an 8 percent dip on the average $66,973 nursing salary. That's with cost of living, hours worked, education and experience factored in, according to a study published last week in the Journal of American Medical Association....
With Tampa set to host the women's Final Four, we offer a week's worth of vignettes on past tournaments:
The winningest NCAA basketball coach ever also may have been its most superstitious. Seems Pat Summitt never met a quirky, irrational custom she didn't like.
Except one. Try to follow along.
Down the stretch of the 1989 season, Summitt and two of her Tennessee assistants — Holly Warlick and Mickie DeMoss — had become enslaved to both routine and preposterous notion alike. An outfit worn during a loss was discarded; a certain shade of lipstick worn during a big victory was purchased in bulk supply....
03/29/15 The Heater
FORT MYERS — Opening day is a week from today, and filling out the starting rotation is among the topics the Rays have to address as they have about a half-dozen spots overall to settle.
With three of their projected five starters (Alex Cobb, Drew Smyly and Alex Colome) sidelined by injury and illness, the Rays are looking at internal and at least a few external options to join Chris Archer, Nathan Karns and Jake Odorizzi....
03/29/15 Lightning Strikes
MONTREAL — After the Lightning lost its second straight game Saturday — with an uncharacteristically low compete level — veteran center Brain Boyle put it simply:
"We've got to right the ship quick."
The Lightning typically does. It is the only team in the NHL to have not lost three in a row all season. And Tampa Bay needs that kind of resiliency tonight in a Bell Centre showdown with Eastern Conference-leading Montreal, which is three points ahead of the Lightning for first place in the Atlantic Division with each team having six games to play....
03/29/15 The Heater
If you knew that they knew …
The Rays have games today and Tuesday against the same Orioles team they play for real next week, but manager Kevin Cash doesn't see it as a big deal either way. "I guess there's an advantage if you can pick a pitcher up doing something, tipping a pitch or showing a tendency," Cash said. "But who's to say he's not intentionally doing that, showing that tendency, and then he's going to totally reverse it come the first series."...
03/29/15 Human Interest
Just as 13-year-old Branden Petro flops into the passenger seat of his mom's car, his eyes roll back. His face twitches uncontrollably. He curls into a fetal position.
It is his third seizure on a particularly bad day. His mother, Renee Petro, 36, jumps from her seat and runs around the car. She pulls the backpack off her son and grabs his hand.
"Squeeze my hand if you can hear me," she pleads. "Squeeze my hand, Branden. Come on baby, squeeze my hand." ...
03/29/15 The Heater
FORT MYERS — With returning closer Jake McGee sidelined for the first month of the season as he recovers from left elbow surgery, the Rays say they plan to use several pitchers in that role.
But expect RHP Brad Boxberger to get a significant share.
"He will be in a lot of meaningful situations," manager Kevin Cash said. "With some other guys, but for what Box did last year and the confidence we have in him, I would definitely anticipate him pitching in those leverage situations."...