Back in its glory days the American Basketball Association, or the ABA had some of the nation's top talent playing the sport. Soon some of that talent can be seen playing on the hardwood here in Shreveport-Bossier. Jerry Nelson owner of the Beaumont Mavericks recently announced he is relocating the team to the area. Nelson believes the success the team had in Beaumont can easily transfer here in the Ark-La-Tex. But how can this team have a shot at success here when so many other semi-pro teams have come and gone?
Shreveport-Bossier has been home at one time or another to a team from every major sport; football, baseball, basketball, and recently hockey. Taylor Moore 27 year owner of Shreveport Captains says when it comes to success his team nearly struck out in the beginning. Moore believes one key to success in this area is to get the local business community involved. He says their marketing dollars will help the team hit a home run for longevity.
But local economist Doctor David Hoaas of Centenary College says not so fast. He says the Mavericks may need to call a time-out to re-think their strategy. Hoaas says one of the biggest attractions to the twin cities are the casinos. which are good at getting people into the area, but the challenge for the Mavericks will be getting those same people to the games.
Former Mudbugs owner Tommy Scott says you need more than a winning team to succeed in this market. Scott believes giving the fans more bang for their bucks will keep them coming. And even with a winning record he says a contract dispute with the managers of the then Centurytel center forced him to sell the team. And that's where the old Hirsch Coliseum comes into play. Building manager Chris Giordano says the move for any team to come and play here is huge. He says despite the age of the facility, and immediate repair needs like the leaking roof, it is ready for play. In Beaumont, the Mavericks are a winning franchise. Soon we'll see if that streak continues when they move to our area this fall.