Last night I returned to an unlikely arena, the Milwaukee Admirals home, the BMO Harris Bradley Center. Not because it has such and unwieldy name, but because the last time I was here, I didn’t expect to return. One change of lifestyle later (traveling all the time – ALL THE TIME), and here I am.
The BMO Harris Bradley Center (there has to be something better to call it) is also the home of the Milwaukee Bucks, the NBA team that no one has heard of. The owners of the Bucks want a new arena, and they want the fans to pay for it, because that’s the way things work when it comes to arenas and sports teams. The building is 26 years old, and it isn’t the prettiest thing ever, but it’s not bad. Of course, that depends on who you ask. From the Milwaukee Business Journal:
For years, officials from the Milwaukee Bucks, team owner Herb Kohl and other city leaders have claimed that the city’s downtown basketball arena is outdated and not fit for an NBA team. On Wednesday, a top NBA official, soon to be the league’s top executive, made the case clear.
For more, check out the coverage on Field of Schemes.
I’ve already stated I do not care for the NBA, so it’s hard to say what I think of the arena as a basketball venue. As a minor league hockey arena, it’s gigantic and has much more capacity and amenities than the team needs, or they are willing to use.
For instance, there are eight box office windows, four inside and four outside. Of the four inside, one was open for will call tickets.
Outside, there were four windows, two of which were open and selling tickets. It was a slow and cold process.
One person in line said that at the new arena, this wouldn’t be a problem. I told him know it was a staffing problem, not a building problem. When you have only half your box office open, a multimillion dollar building isn’t going to fix what a $15 an hour (but probably less) job would solve.
I’ve already been to an Admirals game, so you can read up a bit more on my first experience here. I mostly want to share photos.
Welcome (back) to BMO Harris Bradley Center.
Let’s just get to the action, shall we?
This was a goal.
This was not.
Goalie action. This was a goal. (Look under his pad)
This was not.
Could this be the best jersey in the AHL? Maybe, but I would prefer a color I could wear more often. That logo is awesome.
The hallways of the arena.
Most of the amenities were closed for the game, but the big bars were open.
This is not the Zamboni.
The Admirals lost to the Wild, 3-2. Milwaukee gave up a goal in the first thirty seconds of the game, and struggled to gain control of the puck throughout. They played dump-and-chase hockey most of the game, and kept dumping out of their own zone straight to the Iowa players. It wasn’t pretty hockey.
While I had a good time at the game, there was nothing transcendent about it. Nothing special. But I go to a lot of new places, and this being a repeat, there wasn’t the sense of discovery I usually have at a game.
This weekend will be different.