Wednesday, May 14, 2008

"They blowed 'em up real good!"--Part 2

And the hits just keep on comin'! More stadiums and arenas biting the dust on video...

Riverfront Stadium, Cincinnati (1970-2002) Here you go, Andy!  The home of the "Big Red Machine" spent its final years known as Cinergy Field, and with a huge hunk taken out of it in during its final two seasons in left and center field to make room for the new ballpark next door.  They also ripped out the Astroturf after the Bengals moved across the way to their new stadium, and between the new Shea-like open end and real grass, Riverfront was suddenly a half-decent baseball stadium.  Here's another view of the implosion from a different angle.

Capital Centre, Landover, MD (1973-2002) The former home of the Washington Bullets and Capitals was replaced by the soulless Insert-phone-company-name here Center near the White House.  I'm not sure what it's called this week...

Charlotte Coliseum (1988-2007)  This gi-normous arenaaffectionately known as "The Hive"that held up to 23,000 people for basketball had quite possibly the shortest lifespan of any modern sports venueit didn't even make it to age 20!  This was thanks mostly to a lack of corporate luxury suites, remote distance from downtown (see pic) and the dickhead owner of the Charlotte (now New Orleans) Hornets, George Shinn.  Now Charlotte has their fancy new arena downtown with all the bells and whistles to house the NBA's Bobcats.

The Kingdome, Seattle (1976-2000) Speaking of short lifespans, the giant concrete tomb officially-known as King County Stadium didn't last much longer than Charlotte Coliseum.  Actually, it was only tomb-like for baseball's Mariners, who were just about as moribund as their surroundings until they moved next door to the BMW of baseball stadiums, Safeco Field.  On Seahawk Sundays, however, the Kingdome was the place to be.  The 'Hawks current home was built on the site.  Here's another cool video that features a pictorial history of the place from birth to death.

Veterans Stadium, Philadelphia (1971-2003) Reviled by both baseball and football fans alike, The Vet's demolition was celebrated by sports purists everywhere.  I visited there in 1992, and I didn't think it was so bad, really.  They weren't kidding about the funky smell that permeated the place, tholike dirty mop bucket water combined with grease from a deep fryer!  As was the case in Pittsburgh, The Vet was replaced by two far superior facilities.

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