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Madison Square Garden renovations will offer Rangers and Knicks fans a different view of players

Jul 31, 2011, 1:47 PM EDT


With all the talk of new stadiums and arenas in sports, it’s not often that teams and/or cities put up the money to make an old venue viable. The word “relocate” is thrown around far more often than the word “renovate.”

Then again, there aren’t many venues – in sports and beyond – that carry Madison Square Garden’s prestige. The arena is undergoing some renovations during the next few summers, with modern nods to corporate suites ranking among the highest priorities. (Check out the bottom of this post for a nifty time lapse video of the construction via the New York Post.)

The most interesting alteration might be the “Delta SKY360 Club,” though. Darren Rovell reports that 800 deep-pocketed Rangers fans will be able to watch Rangers players leave the locker room to go onto the ice with this deal. Rovell compared the feature to Cowboys’ Stadium’s Miller Lite Club, which allowed Dallas fans to sneak a peek at the Cowboys before they set foot on Jerry World’s field.

There are some differences between the two plans, though. The biggest is that there will be a glass divider between fans and players, which might not be a bad idea considering all the times hockey and/or basketball players mixed it up with fans. Differences aside, it sounds like a thrilling opportunity for people with fat wallets to heckle sweatier people with even fatter wallets.

“We obviously gutted the whole place so we had an opportunity to do what we wanted,” said Hank Ratner, president and CEO of Madison Square Garden. “We did surveys and fans, not surprisingly, told us they wanted to get closer. So we did this.”

The area in the arena is called the Delta SKY360 Club and fans can watch the Knicks and Rangers go from their locker rooms onto the court and ice before they go to their seats. Those fans can also watch through the glass to see what is going on in the MSG studio.

There are 800 season ticket holders (sold separately for Knicks and Rangers fans) that have access to the club and they pay an undisclosed amount for the all-inclusive tickets, which include a seat just above the floor, food and non-alcoholic drinks.

Here’s that time lapse video from the New York Post.

(H/T to Deadspin. Pro Basketball talk also took a look at this story.  Main image via Madison Square Garden.)

  1. derpdederpdederp - Jul 31, 2011 at 2:44 PM

    Not a bad idea, but if I were a Rangers fan with a not-so-fat wallet I’d be a little disappointed it’s so exclusive. I know there’s a few teams ( the Oilers come to mind) that make this sort of glimpse of the players available to all their fans

  2. nhlbruins90 - Jul 31, 2011 at 4:51 PM

    Nice time-lapse. I visited the MSG renovation website awhile ago and it’s amazing what they’re doing there. The ‘skywalk’ view where you will be able to look straight down over the ice should set a new standard.

  3. icelovinbrotha215 - Jul 31, 2011 at 7:12 PM

    Straight out of the ‘Palace in Dallas’ architectural book. I guess if ya can afford the seat then it’s not bad. Rather be in the stands though.

  4. bigtull - Jul 31, 2011 at 8:56 PM

    I got a general question about MSG: doesn’t MSG have like three venues, one each for hockey/basketball, boxing , and bowling/

    • bwayblues79 - Aug 1, 2011 at 10:28 AM

      All the sports are played in the same venue, as well as track and field (Milrose Games), Professional Bull Riding tours, the ocassional indoor tennis match, and the circus. The three venues thing you may be thinking of is the number of incarnations of MSG. There have been four at various locations in Manhattan. The original was at “Madison Square”.

      As for Ratner’s comment about listening to the fans, I agree with derpderp. While the renaovations are a welcome change, including the big plans for a wide concourse with large windows, the fact of the matter is that the Delta lounge has nothing to do with real Rangers fans. Like most major metropolitan cities, those perks are reserved for companies that buy big suites and ticket packages to use as a perk with clients.

      Anyone visiting New York, who wants the real Rangers experience, needs to buy tickets in the 400 sections. The “blue seats” fans are the ones you want to hang out with; and you still get a great look at the ice.

      • bigtull - Aug 1, 2011 at 11:54 PM

        Thank you very much!

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