We can all agree that the Brooklyn Nets 2013-14 season was a strange one. The Pierce/Garnett experiment, the return of a favorite son in Jason Kidd, the loss of Brook Lopez, that crazy small—big-ball second half, a memorable first-round playoff series win, and an ignominious second round playoff exit.
A constant throughout was Barclays Center and the 17,251 people (on average) who saw the Nets play there… and the almost-commonplace mutterings of ‘huh, this Brooklyn crowd isn’t as crazy as you’d expect’.
And you know what’s amazing? The Nets came in 17th in the NBA last year for attendance. To put that into perspective, the terrible ’13-’14 Cavs squad, who regularly started Alonzo Gee at small forward — came in 16th. 16th!
Why is that? When they moved from New Jersey to Brooklyn, the Nets opened up unprecedented levels of fan exposure; suddenly NYC residents from each of the boroughs could jump a subway and get to a game. Tourists who didn’t want to fork out mega bucks for a ticket to see last year’s execrable Knicks squad could just as easily get to Brooklyn and watch the NBA in an arena that’s not as steeped in history, but brims with potential.
A big problem, one that bugged me as season ticket holder, was not so much the product on the floor (even if that Christmas Day game against the Bulls made me want to burn down our tree and steal the presents of every kid in our building), but how their in-arena experience was, at times, about as creative as a Nicole Scherzinger single.
The Nets organization and Barclays worked on some of the problems throughout the year, and when the building is jumping, it’s electric. But too often the Nets, with one of the slickest color schemes in the league and an all things Brooklyn ethos to get behind, were as cool as the guy hassling the DJ to play “an Eve 6 throwback tune, bro”.
So what the Nets need to do is focus on making the Nets fan-going experience something everyone in New York City should be wanting to be a part of, something tourists hear about and go ‘man, we’ve got to see the Nets, I hear their games are awesome fun’. As such, having sat through 44 home games last season, here are some simple observations about how the team can make a Nets game a must-go experience.
A Brooklyn Jewish community leader says he was attacked by Pro-Palestine protestors outside of Barclays Center after the Maccabi Tel Aviv-Brooklyn Nets game Tuesday night, breaking his nose and requiring stitches.
From The Forward:
Leonard Petlakh, 42, director of the Kings Bay Y, said protestors shouting “Free Palestine” and “Your people are murderers,” accosted him as he left the game in downtown Brooklyn. One of them struck Petlakh in the face, he said.
“It’s ridiculous,” Petlakh told The Forward. “It’s not about the Middle East, it’s about sports.
Petlakh suffered a broken nose and a cut that required eight stitches after the attack, which he said was being investigated by police as an anti-Semitic hate crime.
Petlakh said he hoped, “vile anti-Semitic hooligans masquerading as anti-Zionists will be caught soon.”
The Daily News reported that the dispute started inside the arena when protesters unfurled a Palestinian flag near Petlakh, who was with his family and friends. The argument continued outside when one member of Petlakh’s group tried to grab the flag, police told the News.
More: The Forward -- Jewish Leader Attacked at Brooklyn Nets Game After Palestinian Flag-Grab Incident
The owners of a luxury suite at Barclays Center last year for roughly $1 million is suing Barclays Center for the second time within one year.
The plaintiffs in the lawsuit are Ludwig's Drug Store in Prospect Heights, who claim that arena officials told them that they could make $600,000 return on the suite by reselling the tickets to the suite, but only recouped slightly over $100,000 according to the filed lawsuit accessed by the New York Post.
"We take great exception to the assertion that Ludwig’s would have licensed a suite for the purpose of reselling suite tickets . . . when this . . . is completely contrary to the terms of the suite license," Barclays Center spokesman Barry Baum said to the Post in a statement.
Three of the owners at Ludwig's are already in the midst of a lawsuit against Barclays Center, which seeks $4 million in damages for racial discrimination that they allege occurred after they bought the suite.
New York Post -- Luxury-box owners suing Barclay’s (sic) Center
Barclays Center was the crown jewel plopped in the center of downtown Brooklyn that brought the Nets to the borough for the 2012-13 basketball season, but the arena was also built as a gateway, with the promise of affordable, modular housing soon to follow. Modular housing meant efficiency and fiscal responsibility, and soon after the arena opened, construction began on its southwest corner, on the corner of Flatbush Avenue and Dean Street.
Now, the New York Times reports that construction on the buildings has halted entirely, due to slow development, rising costs, and disputes over who's footing the bill:
Skanska, the operating partner for a joint venture with Forest City at the factory, had a $117 million contract to supply 930 modules for the tower, she said. Skanska had also signed a contract with a separate entity, which includes Forest City, to erect the tower.
But a variety of problems resulted in the cost overruns, with the two sides arguing over who should pay.
“They owe us the building, based on a fixed price,” Ms. Gilmartin said. “They’re responsible for overruns.”
But Richard A. Kennedy, co-chief operating officer of Skanska USA, was emphatic that, contrary to Forest City’s claims, it had not “cracked the code.” Its design, he said, was flawed.
“It just doesn’t work the way it was sold to work,” he said. “We’ve had real challenges with it that’ve delayed the project and led to cost increases. We finally came to the decision to stop work on the project until our significant commercial issues are resolved.”
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Forest City, Mr. Kennedy said, had ignored its “design responsibility” under the contracts.
“It was represented to be a complete and buildable modular design,” he said. “That simply was not the case and that’s what we’ve been struggling with.”
The buildings were slated to be finished in 2015, which was a date that had already followed numerous delays. As of now, Barclays Center is the only completed building from the since-renamed Pacific Park Project.
New York Times -- Construction Is Shut Down at Atlantic Yards Complex
In February of 2013, we noted a glorious, incredible story about a mystical creature landing near Brooklyn's Barclays Center: a Shake Shack was destined to open right across the street, scheduled for autumn of that year.
Nearly a full year after that original arrival time, the Shack has finally made it.... MORE →
On Monday officials from the Democratic National Committee (DNC) plan to visit the Barclays Center as part of a two-day tour intended to exhibit Brooklyn as a viable host for the party’s 2016 Presidential Convention.
The Associated Press reports that New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, a borough resident, and host of other New York officials will escort members of the DNC’s Technical Advisory Group around Brooklyn and Manhattan to sell Brooklyn as an acceptable destination. Since the Borough's hotels cannot accommodate all the expected visitors, Manhattan's hospitality sector and the City's public transit systems are also central to the presentation.
The DNC visitors will take in the usual sights: The Brooklyn Bridge and the Brooklyn Academy of Arts, but The Brooklyn Nets franchise also features prominently in the pitch. The Nets’ home, the Barclays Center, will host the Convention’s main activities and DNC participants will receive customized Nets jerseys. The Brooklyn Game sources added that the retirement of The Brooklyn Knight increased the Borough’s chances of landing the convention exponentially.
Best of luck, Brooklyn. A party convention is an economic boon regardless of party affiliation.
— Mason Plumlee (@masonplumlee) August 5, 2014
Practices for the United States national men's basketball team pick back up on August 14th, so Brooklyn Nets center Mason Plumlee has about one week before he continues his training against some of the best players in the world.
In the meantime, Plumlee returned home and took part in the McDonald's Community Clinic, at the practice court at Barclays Center Tuesday morning. The clinic was hosted in conjunction with Project S.Y.L.V.I.A (Saving Youth Lives through Vision, Intellect, and Athletics), a non-profit from Coney Island dedicated to giving kids opportunities through athletics, and 40 kids from the ages of five to 11 had the opportunity to play basketball with Plumlee.
Plumlee made the "last 16" for the US national team, and will have to survive at least another round of cuts if he wants to make the final 12-man roster. But hey, if Plumlee can take on 40 kids, he can definitely take on DeMarcus Cousins.
Five restaurant workers at Barclays Center have filed a lawsuit against Levy Restaurants, who provide food at catering services at Barclays Center, for "Racial and Disability Discrimination" in the workplace.
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The location of the fire, via Google Maps.
Title just about says it all. From DNAinfo:
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