I've heard that the Kings Arena is pretty nice too ...
Dallas aybody?... what about new phoenix arena?
I can speak for the new Dallas arena.
From a "nice-ness" perspective it's just about as "nice" as it gets. Absolutely beautiful electronics, no concrete showing anywhere, nice seats, brand spankin' new arena.
However, I've always fancied the old-fashioned small arenas where the crowd is oppressive and right on top of the action. The new arena is just too .. nice. .. and it actually absorbs crowd noise rather than contributing to it.
I've only been to the Old Forum, The Bell Centre, Le Colisee de Quebec and Arrowhead Pond. For me the Forum was the best. I remember how unbelievably clean it was for an old building. The best was the standing room. You could get a spot in the reds for $10.00 if you got there early enough. Next would be the Bell Centre, then Arrowhead (new with marble floors...very luxurious) and the Colisee. The colisee is basically a huge junior rink (when I was there the scoreboard still read Local and Visiteur, it was like 1970's technology in the 90's.)
I've only been to Madison Square Garden, Nassau Coliseum and Continental Airlines Arena and the Rankings would go as the following.
I've only been to the Continental once but I wasn't much of a fan in general. I like the buildings where you feel like you're in some place important just by looking at it. Nassau Coliseum has a rich history for Islander fans and is one of the only few classic buildings left, but it's also borderline rundown. Getting to it isn't very easy, parking is a pain in the ass, and it's just a "tired" place in general. Madison Square Garden isn't the world's most famous arena for nothing, and that is why it rank's so high, higher then any other current arena hosting any sports in general. Located in "THE City", you know you're in some place pretty damn special when you first walk in, or come upstairs from Penn Station. It's about as easy as it comes to get to, the building itself has been kept in great shape, and almost every seat is a good seat. They can make all the new arena's they want with all the advanced features and pretty lights and effects they can think of. Slap a stupid corporate name on it like "the Sony building" or "The Ford arena", and you might convince some 16 yrs that don't know any better that they're in the hottest place in town. However, they'll just never hold a candle to places like the Garden and even the Coliseum. These places don't just host sports, they ARE sports.
Add together places like Yankee and Shea Stadiums (both of which I've also had the pleasure to be in) and New Yorkers can easily take for granted the buildings they follow their teams in regularly, and call their sporting homes.
The Saddledome is nothing to write home about but nothing to laugh at either
I have been to over 20 NHL rinks, past and present and by far the worst is the Skyreach Centre in Edmonton, or Rexall Place or whatever they want to call it now
the place is dark and EXTREMELY dirty
The best place I've been to is the Fleet Centre in Boston
This is supposed to be an unbiased opinion on what the best arena in the NHL is. You brought your hate of the Oilers (seeing as your talking about the Saddledome, I would think that you are a Flames fan...?)
Yes, Rexall Place is an old arena, but it's not dirty. It is kind of dark though.
If you honestly think Rexall is the worst arena in the NHL and that is your unbiased opinion, then fine.
Old, but theres not a bad seat in the house and its like you're sitting in a big circle, has decent sized concourses, and just has a classic feel to it. I would hate for the Oilers to move out of there. Playoff atmospheres there are second to none for sure.
The ACC is great....there isn't a bad seat in the house.
Then what about the obstructed view seats?
I think the ACC is a lot more appealing to the eye and is a perfectly designed/located facility, especially considering it's original drafts were to be a basketball-only stadium.
It's still built for basketball. Unlike the Bell Centre where you sit high and close at the ACC, you sit low and back. For hockey, I'd much rather sit high and close then low and far. It is a much better perspective for watching hockey. The only rink I've been to that I like less then the ACC is the Meadowlands.
Unlike the Bell Centre where you sit high and close at the ACC, you sit low and back. For hockey, I'd much rather sit high and close then low and far. It is a much better perspective for watching hockey. The only rink I've been to that I like less then the ACC is the Meadowlands.
That's great. It's your personal opinion.
As for the obstructed view, those aren't seats, they are standing room....and the only thing obstructed is the second tier of the scoreboard. Then again, I haven't sat in every single seat in the arena, so just to protect myself from someone posting about a place where they sat and didn't like, I will take back my "no bad seat in the house".
Saddledome---I've always liked it, haven't been in a bad seat yet, see the action very well. Its seats a fair amount, its by far the most unique design in the NHL, and the flame bursts can't be beat. My main beef is with the concourse. It's not that wide to begin with, and then they proceed to clutter it with a whole bunch of tables for useless junk and a truck, a TRUCK, right next to the Gourmet Pocket stand!
And in regards to the Bell Centre, Wasn't the main concern with it that it was too big. I recall somebody saying that if they were to redraw the plans again, they would have cut the number of seats down by about 2-3,000???
Grading them from the atmosphere to the actual building, and to the ones where I've been around the dressing rooms, my favorite is the Staples Centre.
For my money, Kings fans are one of the best American fans, and really get a bad rap in terms of people not thinking they don't care for their team. It's not quite the same atmosphere as GM Place, the Saddledome, Skyreach (I aint calling it Rexall), or the ACC in terms of atmosphere, of the buildings I've gone too, but it's not too far off either. And in terms of the inner workings and acoustics, it ranks amongst some of the best.
However, from other fans I"ve spoken too whom have been all over, the general concesus of 'best building' I've heard (and this is from fans and media people alike) is the Xcel Energy Center in St.Paul, Minnesota. As well, the Nationwide Arena in Columbus Ohio is a favorite amongst the players, because the practice facility is on the exact same spot.
So my top 3 would probobly be:
#1 - Staples Centre
#2 - Air Canada Centre
#3 - GM Place
(Saddledome, Skyreach, and the 'Joe' are real close, the worst buildings I've been to is BY FAR AND AWAY the Duck Pond in Anaheim.. mostly due to lack of fans, but there are other reasons too)
But from what I hear, it's something like this to others:
#1 - Exel Energy Centre
#2 - Madison Square Gardens
#3 - Pepsi Centre
nationwide arena is really nice. no matter where you sit no obstructed views what so ever. it was built for hockey and it's just a great place all around. it's in a great spot as well. The arena district has really brought it more attention with all the places to eat now and the theater there as well.
I am a traditionalist, so my opinion will probably look different. I like the old arenas. I am not a big fan of all the bells and whistles that arenas have now. I go to watch the game...period. I have been to 6 NHL arenas, and here is how I rank em.
1) Maple Leaf Gardens - Saw 2 games there...simply awesome atmosphere.
2) Joe Louis Arena - I am probably biased, but the atmosphere in the actual rink is great. Its an ugly building and quickly becoming outdated. But sitting in the seats and actually watching the game is what I do. And for me, the Joe is just fine.
3) Nationwide Arena (CBJ)
4) Saavis Center (STL)
5) United Center (CHI)
6) MCI Center (WSH)