LEBRON JAMES BREAKS into the open and slams it down in the end zone?
Rumors that James last years National Basketball Association Most Valuable Player may play pro football continue to circulate, but on February 14, he and 25 more of basketballs best will take the field at the new Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, to shoot hoops in front of the NBAs largest audience ever. More than 80,000 people will be on hand to watch the slam-dunk contest, the three-point shoot-out, and the NBA All-Star Game.
The idea to host the weekend in the stadium originated when the Dallas Mavericks who play in the 20,000-seat American Airlines Center and NBA officials came together to figure out how to accommodate as many people as possible in Dallas for basketballs biggest weekend of the year.
We were looking for a physical venue that could meet all of our needs as we use the All-Star Game to entertain our guests as well as allow Mavs ticket holders to see the game, says Ski Austin, executive vice president of NBA events and attractions.
This wont be the first time the NBA has held a game in a football stadium. There have been dozens of games on the gridiron since the Jazz first played in the Louisiana Superdome in 1975, when the team was still located in New Orleans.
Still, setting up for the All-Star Game will be a grueling five-day experience . The center of the court will be placed over the Dallas Cowboys star at the 50-yard line, and the wooden floor will stretch 20 yards in both directions before the temporary courtside seats begin, according to Austin. Once the court is ready, a few lucky local ballers will even have a chance to test it out before the games begin.
In addition to the stadiums truly tremendous seating capacity, one of its amenities the largest high-definition screen in the world also all but eliminates nosebleed seats. JerryVision, the 11,520-square-foot screen thats more than twice the size of the actual basketball court, will allow the crowd to catch every moment of the game up close, even if theyre sitting in the last row.
Its really a unique experience, Austin says. The ability to view that size of a picture is what makes this kind of fan experience viable. Many of the fans will see the action on the court, but I expect for a lot of the detail, theyll watch the screen in front of them.
The Stars and Stripes wont be the only thing thats big and bright in Dallas come February 14. Every year, designers scour the city thats hosting the All-Star Game to find inspiration for the team uniforms. This year, Adidas created jerseys and shorts with a powerful, colorful feel, relying on primary colors and bold designs to make the players stand out in front of the record crowd. They also are the lightest NBA uniforms ever made. Want to stick out on your local court like the basketball stars will during the game? American Way and the NBA are giving away a team uniform to one lucky fan. Visit www.americanwaymag.com to enter for a chance to win. Contest ends February 14, 2010.