Wednesday, April 11, 2007

End of Season Report Part IV: Pacific Division

Anaheim Ducks @ Honda Center 11/21, 2/7, 3/2 & 4/5:
Building: B-. Nice place, but too big and not too easy to maneuver around.
Seating area: C. The seats are nice and wide, but the sightlines are not great upstairs, I didn't pay to see the back of a head.
Atmosphere: C. The fans were able to get kinda loud when the Ducks scored, but the chants and energy just weren't there.
Concessions: D+. Only a few stands, I did find them, but the food was no good (hot dogs, pretzels, Rubio's grill).
Hospitality: C. Got a few dirty looks, but with all the teal in town, that's not surprising. Got razzed once, AFTER the game.

Overall Grade: C. Maybe come playoff time this place can rock, but until then, the place just doesn't seem terribly imposing. It's an okay place to watch a hockey game, but be ready to lean around the guys 6 rows in front of you blocking your view.

Dallas Stars @ American Airlines Center 12/4, 12/31 2/18 & 3/4:
Building: B. Ho-lee crap this place is big. Walking the wicked nice concourses make forget you're at a hockey game.
Seating Area: B. Any seat is a good seat in the aptly named Hangar, but those stupid cup holder armrests, too small.
Atmosphere: C+. Aside from the "Stars" screamed during the anthem, this place is tumbleweed city except after goals.
Concessions: B-. The downstairs has most of them, but the couple upstairs aren't too bad, and the Dr. Pepper Plant is cool.
Hospitality: B+. Haven't talked to many Stars fans, but all I talked to were nice and ribbing me with a smile on their faces.

Overall Grade: A-. This building is as nice as it is big (very). Ok food, great beer and soda selection (gotta get an RC at the Dr. Pepper Plant), and tons of Sharks fans, can't go wrong. The building and the seats make up for the horrid PA announcer, and the Dallas Stars song gets me pumped, even as a Sharks fan. American Airlines is as good as it can be, for being so far away and having to visit four times.

Los Angeles Kings @ Staples Center 11/9, 11/13, 12/12 & 1/11:
Building: B. Big, nice building with decent sized concourses. The right amount of glitz and glamour for LA.
Seating Area: B. The bowls are very big, the upper level provides an awesome view of the ice. Purple and black seats a plus.
Atmosphere: C+. Those who come try to get loud, but the cavernous building with empty seats makes it hard to do so.
Concessions: B-. Not the greatest selection, but the prices aren't bad, and they do have Panda Express, Chinese for yummy.
Hospitality: C+. Except for the building wide "San Jose Sucks" chants, Kings fans weren't too bad, except for the Prius kids.

Overall Grade: B. Nice arena, nice seats, nice location, not so nice team. The Staples Center is a very comfortable building, and the fans deserve to sit in comfort. Staples is still mainly a scene for the Lakers, but it's a fun and nice place to see a hockey game. Plus, the organ is played by the one and only Dieter Ruhle from Saturday Night Live fame (and was the former organist for the Sharks).

Phoenix Coyotes @ Arena 11/11, 12/30, 1/13 & 3/15:
Building: A-. Beautiful un-arena looking arena from the outside, nice wide concourses inside. Great colors too.
Seating Area: A-. Upstairs is nice and steep, downstairs pretty steep too, seats just a nudge small, and they're red too.
Atmosphere: B. Kids howl, adults howl, TOO MUCH HOWLING. But they're into the game, and that damn howling too.
Concessions: B-. Decent selection of food, good prices, and they have a Hooters in-house. Not enough beer choices though.
Hospitality: B-. Not much communication either way, but the ushers were nice to me as a Sharks fan.

Overall Grade: B+. I thoroughly enjoyed my four trips to the Glendale ( Arena, and will definitely go back in the future. The arena is one of, if not the, nicest in the league, and once the area is surrounded by the restaraunts and shops and condos currently under construction, it'll make for one of the best touristy buildings in the league. Once the 'Yotes get good, this will be a fun rivalry, in an AWESOME BUILDING.

This is the end of the rink report, I'm on my way to Game 1 now. Here's to getting to go to my 21st arena of the year in a few weeks.



Blogger Cynthia said...

I'd be interested in seeing how you grade our Beloved Tank using the standards you assess the other team's arenas by.

4:05 PM  

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