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PANTHERS ON THE PROWL: TEAM LOOKS BEYOND SOUTH FLORIDA
Published October 23, 1995
"Skeptical that Dade County can find a way to build a new arena," Panthers Owner Wayne Huizenga said he would begin seeking a new home for the team outside South Florida, according to a front-page piece in Saturday's MIAMI HERALD. Huizenga Holdings Exec VP James Blosser wrote to the Metro Dade Commissioners that the county and team have failed to develop a "concrete, viable and timely plan" to raise funds for a new arena. Blosser warned the Panthers could be in a new city as soon as next season. The decision "appears to put an abrupt end" to proposals floated by some Metro officials for a combination of taxes to pay for a new arena. That plan, which would have required additional state support, was considered "shaky" by Huizenga. Asst. County Manager David Morris: "It looks like they've decided that's it. What can be said? I thought we had until October 31, but they seem to have decided it's not worth the extra time. But that's their choice." Four cities are mentioned as possible new homes for the Panthers: Nashville (considered the frontrunner), Atlanta, Charlotte and Portland. Blosser noted they are still open to any proposals from local governments. Fort Lauderdale may make a "last-gasp attempt" to get the team (Hartman & Rafinski, MIAMI HERALD, 10/21).