Sun, Sea & Sports: Guide to Miami’s Professional Sports Teams

The weather is warm and the competition is hot. Welcome to Miami! Sports events in South Florida have been hot tickets for the better part of 60 years. Miami sports fans have enjoyed success at terrific arenas, stadiums, and parks. The heat and desire Miami sports teams bring for winning is infectious and felt through any Miami home game. Here is a look at the history of Miami professional sports.

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Major League / Professional Sports

Football

Miami Dolphins

  • League: NFL
  • Division: AFC East
  • Founded: 1966
  • Home Stadium: Hard Rock Stadium

Perfection is synonymous with the Miami Dolphins. The franchise is the only NFL team to go undefeated in the regular season and playoffs, as the 1972 Super Bowl-winning squad led by Don Shula finished 14-0. The franchise repeated as champions a year later, but hasn’t been able to win another title since. It made the Super Bowl in both 1982 and 1984, but fell in both contests. The team has made the postseason 25 times in its history. The Dolphins play at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens, formerly Dolphins Stadium. They previously played in the Miami Orange Bowl until 1986. The Dolphins have rivalries with all of their AFC East opponents: the New York Jets, Buffalo Bills, and New England Patriots. Get Hard Rock Stadium tickets and Miami Dolphins tickets at Ticketmaster.

Basketball

Miami Heat

  • League: NBA
  • Division: Southeast Division
  • Founded: 1988
  • Home Stadium: Kaseya Center

One of the most consistent franchises of the past 30 years, the Miami Heat has built up a winning tradition since the mid-1990s. The talent in South Beach has included Shaquille O’Neal, Dwyane Wade, Alonzo Mourning, Ray Allen, Chris Bosh, and LeBron James. All of those legends won titles in Miami, as the Heat have won three NBA championships: 2006, 2012, and 2013. The 2006 squad featured Wade, O’Neal, and Mourning while the 2012 and 2013 teams featured Wade, James, Bosh, and Allen. Pat Riley has either been the coach or an executive of the team during all of its championships. Over the past 17 years, the Heat have won seven Eastern Conference titles. The team plays at the Kaseya Center on Biscayne Boulevard in Miami. The Heat have rivalries with the Orlando Magic, the New York Knicks, and the Chicago Bulls. Get Kaseya Center tickets and Miami Heat tickets at Ticketmaster.

Baseball

Miami Marlins

  • League: MLB
  • Division: NL East
  • Founded: 1993
  • Home Stadium: LoanDepot Park

Known for making two big postseason runs and suffering through many years of futility, the Miami Marlins have had a few brief stints of success. Previously the Florida Marlins, the team won the World Series in just its fifth year, topping the Cleveland Indians in a dramatic Game 7 in 1997. The team did not make the playoffs again until 2003, when it again won the World Series. The 2003 champions featured dominant performances, most notably by Josh Beckett who threw a complete game victory in the deciding game against the New York Yankees. The Marlins have made the playoffs two more times since 2003, in 2020 and 2023, but have never won their division. The team previously shared a stadium with the Dolphins until LoanDepot Park was built in 2012 in downtown Miami. The Tampa Bay Rays are the Marlins’ biggest rivals. Get LoanDepot Park tickets and Miami Marlins tickets at Ticketmaster.

Ice Hockey

Florida Panthers

  • League: NHL
  • Division: Atlantic Division
  • Founded: 1993
  • Home Stadium: Amerant Bank Arena

The Florida Panthers have enjoyed more success than almost any Miami franchise in the past few years. The Panthers won the Presidents’ Trophy for the best regular season record during the 2021-2022 season and won the Eastern Conference in 2023. The franchise has yet to win a Stanley Cup, but it has only been in existence for just over 30 years. The team also reached the Stanley Cup Finals in 1996, breaking through as a four-seed, despite only having joined the NHL via expansion three seasons prior. The team has played at Amerant Bank Arena, formerly known as National Car Rental Center, since 1998 in Sunrise, Florida. The biggest rival for the Panthers is its cross-state foe, the Tampa Bay Lightning. Get Amerant Bank Arena tickets and Florida Panthers tickets at Ticketmaster.

Soccer

Inter Miami

  • League: MLS
  • Division: Eastern Conference
  • Founded: 2018
  • Home Stadium: Chase Stadium

One of the hottest tickets in town, Inter Miami has been the talk of Miami for the past few years. That is largely to do with the signing of Lionel Messi and the rise of the club’s profile. Inter Miami enjoyed immediate success following Messi’s signing, winning the 2023 Leagues Cup and qualifying for the 2024 CONCACAF Champions Cup. The club has not had much MLS success but averaged over 21,000 fans last season at Chase Stadium, its home stadium in Fort Lauderdale. Its rivalries include one with Miami FC of the USL and Orlando City SC of the MLS. Get Chase Stadium tickets and Inter Miami tickets at Ticketmaster.

Collegiate Sports & Other Professional Teams

The Miami Hurricanes play football at Hard Rock Stadium. Florida Atlantic is in nearby Boca Raton and Florida International University is also located in Miami.

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