The Rapid City Thrillers played in the Continental Basketball Association and started out as the Tampa Bay Thrillers in Florida, winning back-to-back championships in 1985 and 1986 under the management of former ABA coach Bill Musselman. The team never attracted many fans in Tampa and after the IRS seized the team in 1986, the Thrillers were sold to a new owner who moved the team to Rapid City, SD. They would three-peat as CBA champions again in 1987 beating the Rockford Lightning.
They would continue to have success on the court in South Dakota, winning their division five times, although they would not win another championship. Eventually, the team moved back to Florida and became the Florida Beach Dogs from 1995-97. The team would end up failing in Florida and folded. The original owner tried to reboot the team one more time in South Dakota in a new league, the International Basketball Association (IBA), but that would only last one season.