PONTIFICATING FROM THE SUNSHINE STATE – JULY 16
By Leo Haggerty

THE SILVER LINING

Indulge me for a minute, my loyal readers, as I take you back to March of 2020.  Yes, that fateful time when the pandemic brought the human race to a standstill.

The coronavirus began to reek havoc throughout the globe last March.  AS we moved forward, people we dying by the thousands daily and there was no end in sight.  Covid was on the minds of everyone and survival became a daily obsession.

As we were all sequestered to our humble abodes, athletic endeavors suffered the same fate.  College sports, specifically March Madness, was the first to shut down but that, as we observed, was the tip of the iceberg.

All professional sports in North America were effected.  The National Hockey League and the National Basketball Association shut down immediately.  Major League Baseball put the start of their season on indefinite hold.  The National Football League was trying to come up with a plan so they could prepare for their campaign in the fall.

The human race was in disarray as the disease completely changed our way of life.  From a fan perspective, people were in a state of shock as every professional league shuttered its doors.

Finally, the aforementioned leagues found a way to resume play.  It is out of the ashes of 2020 that Tampa Bay became the epicenter of professional championships.

It began with the Tampa Bay Lightning capturing the Stanley Cup.  That was followed up by the Tampa Bay Rowdies being crowned the USL Champion.  Then, the Rays won the American League pennant with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers not far behind securing the Lombardi Trophy.

Well, the beat goes on in Tampa Bay.  The Bolts continued the streak as the organization went back-to-back winning their second Stanley Cup.

Memo to the Rays and Bucs.  The Lightning dropped the hammer.  Keep playing great baseball because the pressure is back on you to continue the Champa Bay run.

Enjoy the ride, folks, and keep your seat beat buckled.  The ride could even get wilder.