Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Farewell Spectrum

It was announced today that the Spectrum will be torn down in 2009.  The Spectrum, one of the oldest arenas in Philly, used to house the Flyers and the Sixers.  The Flyers and Sixers moved out in 1994.  The Spectrum now houses the Phantoms (minor league hockey), Kixx (indoor soccer), and Wings (indoor lacrosse).  

The Spectrum has seen some of the biggest moments in Philly sports history.  The Flyers won two Stanley Cups there.  The Sixers also won two world championships while playing in the Spectrum.  The Flyers beat the "best team in the world" Soviet Central Red Army 4-1 in a memorable game in 1976.  

The Broad Street Bullies hockey team rattled the boards at the Spectrum.  Julius Erving rattled the rim for the Sixers.  Several important NCAA tournament games have been played at the Spectrum.  The Grateful Dead held 53 concerts at the Spectrum.

In place of the Spectrum, there will be an entertainment complex and possibly a hotel.  For those who don't know: all of the Philadelphia professional sports arenas/stadiums are in the same place in south Philly along Broad Street.  I do not know why they are building a entertainment complex.  I thought the sports are the entertainment.  Make that were the entertainment.

This is another example of how sports are not the main event at sporting venues.  When you went to the Spectrum, you went to see sports.  There were no ands, ifs, or buts about it.  It is a cramped arena.  You didn't go to have a nice time with the family or to eat at a restaurant or play games at the game.  The Spectrum was built to watch sports.  Stadiums built today are more about making as much money as you can while still showing a sporting event.

We will miss you Spectrum, with your lack of leg room and sticky floors.  We will know that you are from a dying kind.


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