Ultimate Hoop Experience Returns To Houston
by: Pat Hernandez, February 9, 2012 7:02:00 pm
It will be the third time Houston has hosted NBA All-Star festivities.
Tad Brown, CEO of the Houston Rockets, says it is the ultimate experience for the fans.
"It validates what great fans we have in the city of Houston, because the NBA wouldn't come to a city, unless they knew that there was gonna be such a demand for the game. So, we're very excited. Mr. Alexander is always focusing on 'What can we do for the fans, what can we do, where the organization can build great experiences for our fans and great opportunities for the city', and you can't find a better opportunity than the NBA All-Star Game. So, we're really really excited."
Toyota Center becomes the first venue in Texas to host the All-Star Game more than once. The mid-season professional hoop celebration first came to town in 1989 and was played in the Astrodome. In the 2006 All-Star Game, Rockets forward Tracy McGrady, who joined center Yao Ming in the starting lineup, had game high 36 points in a losing effort for the Western Conference. NBA Commissioner David Stern said the venue downtown makes it perfect for the event.
"Well, Houston just has a great combination. I'm not gonna pick and choose among cities, but the Toyota Center and the housing, the hotel stock close in is really unique, in terms of the number of rooms and the like, and the convention center next door it's, it's probably ideal."
Meanwhile, Mayor Annise Parker says the All-Star game is returning to the Bayou City, because Houston knows how to do big events.
"While its great to have the world wide media here for the NBA All-Star Game, and all of the surrounding fan activities, this has a direct economic impact on the city of Houston. We know from 2006 that it's gonna have at least $100 million worth of spin for this city, and a lot of family members who may not be interested so much in the NBA and the All-Stars, they're gonna go and see the city."
Parker says this is not something that is gifted to the city.
"We work hard for it, and part of the way we work for it is by putting on other sporting events. But we have to say that we want to host. We put in bids to host and the NBA responds."
Houston has played host to the NCAA Final Four, the Regionals, as well as the Super Bowl, The Major League Baseball All-Star Game, and the All-Star game in Major League Soccer. The Final Four returns to Houston in 2016.