Skip to main content

Student hoops at the Barclays Center: pretty much either an all-star game or pay-to-play

I wrote in July 2012 about the promise--in a 20014 Forest City Ratner flier and other propaganda--that the Atlantic Yards arena would be a venue for "amateur athletics."

That was reinforced by elected officials.

When the first Memorandum of Understanding signed by the city, state, and Forest City was released, then-Gov. George Pataki, in a 3/4/05 press release, promised that "The new Arena will not only be home to the Nets, but will host local community events, as well as concerts and school athletics for neighboring high schools and colleges."

Well, not so much. 

Yes, there are several college tournaments with teams of national or regional interest.

And Brooklyn-based Long Island University plays a few games a year.

But the arena is a hardly a home for high school basketball, so the promises were out of line. Rather, as described below, it's been a home for pay-to-play.

There has been one regular high school event: today is the third straight year of the "country's premier prep basketball event, Jordan Brand Classic," at the Barclays Center. It includes an International Game, then the first annual Girls All-American Game, then the Regional Game, and the National Game.

The PSAL blip

New York City's Public School Athletic League (PSAL) championships did come to the Barclays Center in 2014 for the first time (press release), but returned to Madison Square Garden this year. Last year's blip was a scheduling conflict with MSG.

As the Daily News reported, the one downside of using the Barclays Center last year was a condensed playoff schedule, with fewer days between games in the tournament.

“God forbid a kid gets injured (in the semifinals), you don’t have that extra couple of days to nurse that kid back to 100%,” [Cardozo boys coach Ron] Naclerio told the newspaper last year. “That is the one negative. When you’re dealing with corporate America, unfortunately they don’t adjust to you; you adjust to them.”

Pay-to-play

You can get to the Barclays Center, it turns out, if you pay

As shown in the screenshot at right, there's a Fan Experience Package that includes:
Court of Dreams
Play where the pros play before or after a Brooklyn Nets game! Do not miss this opportunity to play an authentic basketball game on the court with the same amenities as the pros including announcers, access to the player benches, and the ability for your fans to watch and cheer you on. Call for ticket requirement.
This is hardly novel in the NBA, though the Nets are more opaque than some, since they don't announce a ticket requirement.

The Miami Heat requires at least 150 group tickets per hour. The Cleveland Cavaliers require at least 300 tickets purchased. The Indiana Pacers require 100-300 tickets. The Atlantic Hawks require 200-300 tickets. The Dallas Mavericks require $9.000-$10,000 in tickets. (For the Knicks, you only get the training center.)


A high school game at the Barclays Center

Two New Jersey high school teams did play at the Barclays Center in January of last year.

They just had to sell some tickets, as shown in the flyer at left. This is one of several examples of high school and other teams playing on the Court of Dreams.

A youth team at the Barclays Center

The youth basketball program FunSport was one of the first, in December 2012, as noted here:
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 23rd – CHAMPIONSHIP GAME @BARCLAYS CENTER (Details)
* Each player will receive new uniforms, shoes, socks, backpack, headband, and t-shirt
* This weekend tickets will be on sale. Minimum tickets are $50pp or premium package which includes courtside seating during championship game and closer seating for Nets-Sixers game for $175pp (limited quantity available)
The video of the event shows a rather sparse crowd.




Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Barclays Center/Levy Restaurants hit with suit charging discrimination on disability, race; supervisors said to use vicious slurs, pursue retaliation

The Daily News has an article today, Barclays Center hit with $5M suit claiming discrimination against disabled, while the New York Post headlined its article Barclays Center sued over taunting disabled employees.

While that's part of the lawsuit, more prominent are claims of racial discrimination and retaliation, with black employees claiming repeated abuse by white supervisors, preferential treatment toward Hispanic colleagues, and retaliation in response to complaints.

Two individual supervisors, for example, are charged with  referring to black employees as “black motherfucker,” “dumb black bitch,” “black monkey,” “piece of shit” and “nigger.”

Two have referred to an employee blind in one eye as “cyclops,” and “the one-eyed guy,” and an employee with a nose disorder as “the nose guy.”

There's been no official response yet though arena spokesman Barry Baum told the Daily News they, but take “allegations of this kind very seriously” and have "a zero tolerance policy for…

Behind the "empty railyards": 40 years of ATURA, Baruch's plan, and the city's diffidence

To supporters of Forest City Ratner's Atlantic Yards project, it's a long-awaited plan for long-overlooked land. "The Atlantic Yards area has been available for any developer in America for over 100 years,” declared Borough President Marty Markowitz at a 5/26/05 City Council hearing.

Charles Gargano, chairman of the Empire State Development Corporation, mused on 11/15/05 to WNYC's Brian Lehrer, “Isn’t it interesting that these railyards have sat for decades and decades and decades, and no one has done a thing about them.” Forest City Ratner spokesman Joe DePlasco, in a 12/19/04 New York Times article ("In a War of Words, One Has the Power to Wound") described the railyards as "an empty scar dividing the community."

But why exactly has the Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s Vanderbilt Yard never been developed? Do public officials have some responsibility?

At a hearing yesterday of the Brooklyn Borough Board Atlantic Yards Committee, Kate Suisma…

Forest City acknowledges unspecified delays in Pacific Park, cites $300 million "impairment" in project value; what about affordable housing pledge?

Updated Monday Nov. 7 am: Note follow-up coverage of stock price drop and investor conference call and pending questions.

Pacific Park Brooklyn is seriously delayed, Forest City Realty Trust said yesterday in a news release, which further acknowledged that the project has caused a $300 million impairment, or write-down of the asset, as the expected revenues no longer exceed the carrying cost.

The Cleveland-based developer, parent of Brooklyn-based Forest City Ratner, which is a 30% investor in Pacific Park along with 70% partner/overseer Greenland USA, blamed the "significant impairment" on an oversupply of market-rate apartments, the uncertain fate of the 421-a tax break, and a continued increase in construction costs.

While the delay essentially confirms the obvious, given that two major buildings have not launched despite plans to do so, it raises significant questions about the future of the project, including:
if market-rate construction is delayed, will the affordable h…

Revising official figures, new report reveals Nets averaged just 11,622 home fans last season, Islanders drew 11,200 (and have option to leave in 2018)

The Brooklyn Nets drew an average of only 11,622 fans per home game in their most recent (and lousy) season, more than 23% below the announced official attendance figure, and little more than 65% of the Barclays Center's capacity.

The New York Islanders also drew some 19.4% below announced attendance, or 11,200 fans per home game.

The surprising numbers were disclosed in a consultant's report attached to the Preliminary Official Statement for the refinancing of some $462 million in tax-exempt bonds for the Barclays Center (plus another $20 million in taxable bonds). The refinancing should lower costs to Mikhail Prokhorov, owner of the arena operating company, by and average of $3.4 million a year through 2044 in paying off arena construction.

According to official figures, the Brooklyn Nets attendance averaged 17,187 in the debut season, 2012-13, 17,251 in 2013-14, 17,037 in 2014-15, and 15,125 in the most recent season, 2015-16. For hoops, the arena holds 17,732.

But official…

So, Forest City has some property subject to the future Gowanus rezoning

Writing yesterday, MAP: Who Owns All the Property Along the Gowanus Canal, DNAinfo's Leslie Albrecht lays out the positioning of various real estate players along the Gowanus Canal, a Superfund site:
As the city considers whether to rezone Gowanus and, perhaps, morph the gritty low-rise industrial area into a hot new neighborhood of residential towers (albeit at a fraction of the height of Manhattan's supertall buildings), DNAinfo reviewed property records along the canal to find out who stands to benefit most from the changes.
Investors have poured at least $440 million into buying land on the polluted waterway and more than a third of the properties have changed hands in the past decade, according to an examination of records for the nearly 130 properties along the 1.8-mile canal. While the single largest landowner is developer Property Markets Group, other landowners include Kushner Companies, Alloy Development, Two Trees, and Forest City New York.

Forest City's plans unc…

At 550 Vanderbilt, big chunk of apartments pitched to Chinese buyers as "international units"

One key to sales at the 550 Vanderbilt condo is the connection to China, thanks to Shanghai-based developer Greenland Holdings.

It's the parent of Greenland USA, which as part of Greenland Forest City Partners owns 70% of Pacific Park (except 461 Dean and the arena).

And sales in China may help explain how the developer was able to claim early momentum.
"Since 550 Vanderbilt launched pre-sales in June [2015], more than 80 residences have gone into contract, representing over 30% of the building’s 278 total residences," the developer said in a 9/25/15 press release announcing the opening of a sales gallery in Brooklyn. "The strong response from the marketplace indicates the high level of demand for well-designed new luxury homes in Brooklyn..."

Maybe. Or maybe it just meant a decent initial pipeline to Chinese buyers.

As lawyer Jay Neveloff, who represents Forest City, told the Real Deal in 2015, a project involving a Chinese firm "creates a huge market for…