11/9 sharks 7, LOS ANGELES 3
Just like everything else in Los Angeles, Staples Center doesn't disappoint from being glamorous. From the glowing purple outside to the crystal clear (diamond, rather) DiamondVision that hangs from the rafters, Staples Center is a building built for L.A. From the outside, it is very individualized, as is pretty much every building I've visited thus far, but the inside is very reminiscent of other arenas.
On entering, the escalators are situated very similarly to the buildings in Columbus and Nashville. The lower concourse looks almost exactly like Tampa, as the wide walkway is dotted with pillars and round counters. The entrances to the seats are elongated hallways, however Staples has black curtains hanging outside the entrances.
Just as expected for L.A., everything in the building is brand-named to the extreme. Inside the building, one can get food from Domino's Pizza, Panda Express ( [whispering voice] Chinese for yummy [ /whispering voice] ), and Joni Maroni hot dogs. The food, as it is all pretty much brand name, is exactly what you would expect, as all fast food from the same place tastes the same EVERYWHERE (a Big Mac in L.A. is a Big Mac in Shanghai).
A pair of escalators up to the high ups (past three levels of suites/luxury boxes) take you to an upper level very similar to both Nashville and Florida, as there are no concessions or much of really anything in either end zone area.
The seating area is pretty large, as there are 3 levels of normal seating, with three levels of luxury boxes between the second and third seating levels. The upper level behind section 307-313 are where the banners hang, well, where the banners are mounted. There are about a hundred Laker banners, a few less retired Laker jerseys, a couple of Kings banners, and one L.A. Avengers (Arena Football) banner.
The game itself was fun, for any and all Sharks fans in attendance (there were a lot). Led by a Patrick Marleau hat trick, a pair of goals from Jonathan Cheechoo, and 35 saves from Vesa Toskala, the Sharks started their four-game roadie the right way.
The second game of the trip sees the Sharks taking on the struggling Phoenix Coyotes from the newly-christened Jobing.com Arena (rolls right off the e-tongue).
Go Sharks (go find a movie star)
That's a whole lotta glass.
The new age crown at CI.