War on I-4

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This article is about the Arena Football League rivalry. For the college football rivalry, see UCF–USF football rivalry.
Orlando Predators–Tampa Bay Storm
Regular-season history
First meeting June 1, 1991
Florida Suncoast Dome
St. Petersburg, Florida
First result Predators 51, Storm 38
Last meeting April 19, 2014
CFE Arena
Orlando, Florida
Last result Storm 35, Predators 34
Next meeting TBA
Rivalry status 55 meetings
Largest victory Predators 52, Storm 13 (2006)
Smallest victory Predators 44, Storm 43 (2000)
Storm 63, Predators 62 (2010)
Storm 35, Predators 34 (2014)
Current streak Storm, 1
All-Time series Predators 28–27
Postseason history
Last Meeting August 14, 2010
Last Result Storm 63, Predators 62
All-Time postseason series Tied 4–4
Playoff and Championship success
ArenaBowl Wins Storm: V (1991), VII (1993), IX (1995), X (1996), XVII (2003)
Predators: XII (1998), XIV (2000)
ArenaBowl Appearances Storm: I (1987), III (1989) V (1991) VII (1993), IX (1995), X (1996), XII (1998), XVII (2003), XXIII (2010)
Predators: VI (1992), VIII (1994), IX (1995), XII (1998), XIII (1999), XIV (2000), XX (2006)

The War On I-4 is the nickname for the rivalry between the Tampa Bay Storm and the Orlando Predators in the Arena Football League. The teams have met at least twice and up to four times a season since 1991, and both have consistently been at the top of the league standings. The rivalry has been compared to the Yankees – Red Sox rivalry in Major League Baseball.[1]

Although the Tampa Bay and Orlando markets, separated by an 80-mile stretch of Interstate 4, have teams in each of the major professional sports leagues of the United States and Canada, none of the Big Four leagues have a team in both cities. Orlando has the Magic of the NBA while Tampa Bay hosts the Rays in MLB, Buccaneers in the NFL and Lightning in the NHL. Despite each market being of relatively large size in its own respective right, few leagues (especially those that have had long histories) have attempted to place teams in both cities; this has created few opportunities for the two nearby cities to form rivalries. The Arena Football League was an aberration in this regard when it approved the Orlando Predators as an expansion team in 1991, then allowed for the Pittsburgh Gladiators, a charter AFL team, to relocate to the Tampa Bay area and become the Tampa Bay Storm. The Storm and Predators became instant rivals.

Currently the games are played either at the Predators' home, CFE Arena, or the Storm's home, Amalie Arena (previously known as the "Ice Palace", "St. Pete Times Forum", and "Tampa Bay Times Forum"). Games hosted by the Storm before the 1997 season were held at what is now Tropicana Field, but was known as "Florida Suncoast Dome" before 1994 and "Thunderdome" thereafter. Games hosted by the Predators until the end of the 2010 season were at Hummer Field at the Amway Arena (originally the "Orlando Arena," later "TD Waterhouse Centre"). From 2011–2013 they played at Amway Center.

The overall record in both regular and postseason combined currently has the Predators leading 28–27. The sides have met eight times in the AFL playoffs, with each team winning four times, and twice in the ArenaBowl, with each team winning once. Their most recent playoff meeting was on August 14, 2010 in the American Conference Championship game, in which Tampa Bay won 63–62 as a long field goal attempt by the Predators fell short as time expired.[2]

The games between the teams are notable for featuring some of the highest attendances in AFL history. The ArenaBowl IX title match of September 1, 1995 drew an Arena Bowl record crowd of 25,087 to Thunderdome to see the Storm defeat the Predators by 48–35.[3] Both teams are known to organize bus trips for supporters down Interstate 4 (hence the War on I-4) to the other city to see their squad play.[4]

The series also has the top overall attendance record in league history when Orlando defeated Tampa Bay 46–45 in front of 28,745 at the Florida Suncoast Dome in week 6 of the 1993 AFL season.

In 2010, the rivalry resumed after a year off caused by the Arena Football League suspending operations in 2009.

Game-by-game results[edit]

Season Date Home Team Score Away Team Venue Comp. Atten. Record (ORL–TB)
1991 June 1 Tampa Bay Storm 38–51 Orlando Predators Florida Suncoast Dome Week 1 10,354 1–0
1991 July 27 Orlando Predators 16–26 Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena Week 9 13,680 1–1
1992 May 29 Orlando Predators 32–39 Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena Week 1 11,312 1–2
1992 July 2 Tampa Bay Storm 33–48 Orlando Predators Florida Suncoast Dome Week 6 20,091 2–2
1992 August 15 Orlando Predators 24–21 (OT) Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena AFL Semifinal 13,680 3–2
1993 May 21 Orlando Predators 46–34 Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena Week 2 13,680 4–2
1993 June 19 Tampa Bay Storm 45–46 Orlando Predators Florida Suncoast Dome Week 6 28,745 5–2
1993 August 14 Orlando Predators 52–55 Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena AFL Semifinal 13,680 5–3
1994 July 1 Orlando Predators 61–40 Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena Week 7 14,015 6–3
1994 August 13 Tampa Bay Storm 40–39 Orlando Predators ThunderDome Week 13 20,819 6–4
1995 July 14 Orlando Predators 34–51 Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena Week 10 15,638 6–5
1995 July 29 Tampa Bay Storm 44–20 Orlando Predators ThunderDome Week 12 24,055 6–6
1995 September 1 Tampa Bay Storm 48–35 Orlando Predators ThunderDome ArenaBowl IX 25,087 6–7
1996 May 18 Tampa Bay Storm 63–42 Orlando Predators ThunderDome Week 4 16,444 6–8
1996 July 19 Orlando Predators 40–39 Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena Week 13 16,236 7–8
1997 May 17 Tampa Bay Storm 17–43 Orlando Predators Ice Palace Week 3 14,179 8–8
1997 June 27 Orlando Predators 54–30 Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena Week 9 16,529 9–8
1998 June 12 Orlando Predators 34–42 Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena Week 7 15,948 9–9
1998 June 27 Tampa Bay Storm 56–30 Orlando Predators Ice Palace Week 9 14,125 9–10
1998 August 23 Tampa Bay Storm 31–62 Orlando Predators Ice Palace ArenaBowl XII 17,222 10–10
1999 June 12 Orlando Predators 37–63 Tampa Bay Storm Orlando Arena Week 8 15,101 10–11
1999 July 11 Tampa Bay Storm 47–28 Orlando Predators Ice Palace Week 12 11,777 10–12
1999 August 7 Tampa Bay Storm 19–41 Orlando Predators Ice Palace AFL Quarterfinal 10,706 11–12
2000 May 12 Orlando Predators 44–43 Tampa Bay Storm TD Waterhouse Centre Week 5 13,342 12–12
2000 July 1 Tampa Bay Storm 50–36 Orlando Predators Ice Palace Week 12 14,047 12–13
2000 August 3 Orlando Predators 34–24 Tampa Bay Storm TD Waterhouse Centre AFL Quarterfinal 13,122 13–13
2001 June 10 Orlando Predators 57–45 Tampa Bay Storm TD Waterhouse Centre Week 9 13,691 14–13
2001 July 1 Tampa Bay Storm 38–46 Orlando Predators Ice Palace Week 12 17,634 15–13
2002 June 9 Tampa Bay Storm 48–45 Orlando Predators TD Waterhouse Centre Week 8 12,855 15–14
2002 July 7 Tampa Bay Storm 48–55 Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum Week 12 11,784 16–14
2003 February 9 Orlando Predators 54–51 Tampa Bay Storm TD Waterhouse Centre Week 2 13,541 17–14
2003 March 16 Tampa Bay Storm 52–32 Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum Week 7 15,054 17–15
2003 June 7 Tampa Bay Storm 60–50 Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum AFL Semifinal 14,028 17–16
2004 February 8 Tampa Bay Storm 52–41 Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum Week 1 15,404 17–17
2004 May 2 Orlando Predators 58–63 Tampa Bay Storm TD Waterhouse Centre Week 13 13,714 17–18
2005 February 11 Orlando Predators 61–46 Tampa Bay Storm TD Waterhouse Centre Week 3 14,478 18–18
2005 April 9 Tampa Bay Storm 42–54 Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum Week 11 18,794 18–19
2006 February 19 Tampa Bay Storm 64–67 (OT) Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum Week 4 14,692 19–19
2006 April 22 Orlando Predators 52–13 Tampa Bay Storm TD Waterhouse Centre Week 13 15,920 20–19
2007 March 2 Tampa Bay Storm 27–52 Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum Week 1 15,920 21–19
2007 April 14 Orlando Predators 61–37 Tampa Bay Storm Amway Arena Week 7 15,920 22–19
2008 April 26 Orlando Predators 41–48 Tampa Bay Storm Amway Arena Week 9 13,365 22–20
2008 June 7 Tampa Bay Storm 71–61 Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum Week 15 17,344 22–21
2010 May 28 Orlando Predators 50–62 Tampa Bay Storm Amway Arena Week 9 10,924 22–22
2010 July 31 Tampa Bay Storm 60–75 Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum Week 18 17,302 23–22
2010 August 14 Tampa Bay Storm 63–62 Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum AFL Semifinal 10,104 23–23
2011 May 6 Orlando Predators 63–61 Tampa Bay Storm Amway Center Week 9 12,897 24–23
2011 June 17 Tampa Bay Storm 46–44 Orlando Predators St. Pete Times Forum Week 15 11,151 24–24
2012 May 5 Tampa Bay Storm 55–31 Orlando Predators Tampa Bay Times Forum Week 9 8,488 24–25
2012 June 15 Orlando Predators 64–40 Tampa Bay Storm Amway Center Week 15 12,441 25–25
2013 April 20 Orlando Predators 35–53 Tampa Bay Storm Amway Center Week 5 11,969 25–26
2013 June 8 Tampa Bay Storm 48–55 Orlando Predators Tampa Bay Times Forum Week 12 14,041 26–26
2014 March 29 Tampa Bay Storm 52–56 Orlando Predators Tampa Bay Times Forum Week 3 10,896 27–26
2014 April 19 Orlando Predators 77–65 Tampa Bay Storm CFE Arena Week 6 5,434 28–26
2014 June 21 Tampa Bay Storm 35–34 Orlando Predators Tampa Bay Times Forum Week 15 11,890 28–27

Winner in bold.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Pickard, B. J. (June 14, 2011). "The War on I-4: AFL's Biggest Rivals Collide in Tampa". Arena Football League. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  2. ^ "Storm Punch Ticket To ArenaBowl XXIII With 63-62 Win Over Predators". Arena Football League. August 14, 2010. Retrieved August 15, 2010. 
  3. ^ Fran Stuchbury (June 6, 2005). "City reveals vision for Amway Arena area". Our Sports Central. Retrieved August 3, 2010. 
  4. ^ "Bus Trip to Tampa Announced" Retrieved August 3, 2010