Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Stadium Review: Palace at Auburn Hills

The home of DEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEETROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOIT BAAAAAAAAASKEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEETBAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALL and the site of the Malice at the Palace was arena #327 (approximation) on my list of sports venues. C and I visited it for an early NBA game featuring the hometown Pistons against my squad, the New York Knicks.

Toss up. It's in a nice neighborhood, so it feels safe and corporate, but that's also it's main issue. It's a pain to get to because is so deep in the burbs and it isn't easy to plan a night around. i.e. park the car, grab drinks here, food there, meet up with friends, then walk to the game. I prefer a potentially shady area in a downtown part of a city than a wide open, safe area  (as long as you're not in the stands when Metta World Peace is playing!) 16 times out of 17.

Cheap and easy. And we got there 20 minutes before tipoff for a FRIDAY night game against a marquee opponent with the Red Wings on the road. Oh wait, I should probably mention the Lions were playing at New Orleans in the NFL Playoffs at the exact same time. This may or may not have been a factor.

Didn't eat any there, but the nachos looked good. Not much in the way of food options nearby as I mentioned earlier.

Not badly priced. Had one tall Bud Heavy, I think it was $7 or $8. The blue hairs to the left of us were crushing nachos and beers.

Very cool concourses. They were wide and filled with big pictures of concerts played there and seminal moments in Pistons history. It 

We paid $38 for each ticket that had a face value of $80. A few factors are in play there. The Pistons are not good at basketball, the Lions were playing at the exact same time (on the road) and Detroit is Hockeytown, not Basketballtown.

Entertainment and Atmosphere
Typical 2012 NBA game stuff. Fire blasts, strobe lights and blacked out during player intros, cutesy giveaways (every time a Piston drains a 3, they toss out free shirts "Tees for 3s"). Nothing was too inventive or backwards. It was tough to get a real feel of the atmosphere on account of the light crowd. However, they showed Lions clips throughout the game and it got loud when they scored a TD, which was pretty cool to see/hear. I think when the Pistons are good again, it'll be a great arena to watch some ball.

The tickets we had were awesome - nine or 10 rows up on the baseline. The Knicks played their best pre-Linsanity game and we sat next to some fun people. We had a great time and I would go again, but probably not for a non-Knicks game. Just not enough of an event/night out feel with it so far in the burbs.

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