Jump to content
Brewer Fanatic

Most iconic American sports venue


LouisEly
 Share

Watching ESPN this morning and they posted a poll asking what is the most iconic American sports venue. The choices are:

 

Augusta National

Cameron Indoor Stadium

Churchill Downs

Fenway Park

Lambeau Field

Madison Square Garden

Rose Bowl

Wrigley Field

 

IMO, the first two should not be on the list. Cameron Indoor was nothing until around 1990, and Augusta shouldn't be on there because of bigotry until around 1990 (and beyond).

 

For me, it's an easy choice - Madison Square Garden because of the variety of major events that it has hosted. NBA finals, Stanley Cup finals, epic boxing matches, NCAA tournament games, Wrestlemanias. It's outdated now and has been for a while, the venue itself is nothing special and boxing is no longer what it was, but you add the variety and magnitude of events it has hosted with the prestige of New York city and it's #1.

 

I'd put Lambeau at #2. Fenway and Wrigley are in the conversation, but when the teams that play there go 100 years without a championship it doesn't really carry as much weight as winning 13 world championships. Lambeau has never and will never host a Super Bowl, but it's not a one-trick pony like Churchill Downs or the Rose Bowl where it's relevant one day a year.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Recommended Posts

Watching ESPN this morning and they posted a poll asking what is the most iconic American sports venue. The choices are:

 

Augusta National

Cameron Indoor Stadium

Churchill Downs

Fenway Park

Lambeau Field

Madison Square Garden

Rose Bowl

Wrigley Field

 

IMO, the first two should not be on the list. Cameron Indoor was nothing until around 1990, and Augusta shouldn't be on there because of bigotry until around 1990 (and beyond).

 

For me, it's an easy choice - Madison Square Garden because of the variety of major events that it has hosted. NBA finals, Stanley Cup finals, epic boxing matches, NCAA tournament games, Wrestlemanias. It's outdated now and has been for a while, the venue itself is nothing special and boxing is no longer what it was, but you add the variety and magnitude of events it has hosted with the prestige of New York city and it's #1.

 

I'd put Lambeau at #2. Fenway and Wrigley are in the conversation, but when the teams that play there go 100 years without a championship it doesn't really carry as much weight as winning 13 world championships. Lambeau has never and will never host a Super Bowl, but it's not a one-trick pony like Churchill Downs or the Rose Bowl where it's relevant one day a year.

 

The Rose Bowl has held multiple Super Bowls & college playoff/ championship games. That will place it ahead of Lambeau on any Icon list in the minds of most people.

For a Packers fan, Lambeau is iconic. Bears fans feel the same about Soldier Field & Steelers fans feel the same about Three Rivers & now Heinz field.

For a non-Packer fan (& most of the country are NOT Packer fans), Lambeau is cold place where a handful football games are played each year. 1 memorable game (the Ice Bowl) was played at Lambeau in the minds of most people so it would not be top 5, let alone #2.

 

Old Cowboy stadium with the field size opening in the roof or the SuperDome will be more recognizable & jump to the minds of more people when asked to think about pro football venues..

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lambeau is by far the most iconic NFL stadium, really it's the only one that matters, but I would put it a good notch below Fenway and Wrigley just because of the much longer history of the sport. Prior to like 1957 the NFL was still quite a bit below college football on the national radar as well, there are probably quite a few college stadiums that are older in addition to the Rose Bowl which I would also rank higher than Lambeau. No denying the NFL is king now but I just feel baseball is just a more iconic sport in this country if that makes sense.

 

But with the Ice Bowl always brought up every year I can see why there is a argument for it through the eyes of the general public in 2022.

Edited by OldHeidelberg
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Brewer Fanatic Contributor

I think most football fans know that Lambeau Field is iconic beyond just being the home stadium of the Green Bay Packers. I'd say that Lambeau is likely the most iconic NFL stadium, but probably not the most iconic sports venue.

 

I'd probably agree that MSG gets it, based on the reasons given above.

 

Wrigley Field is a charming dump.

 

Old Yankee Stadium would have made this list, if it were still in use.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A few others I would at least add to the list to discuss would be:

 

LA Coliseum

Notre Dame Stadium

"Dustin Pedroia doesn't have the strength or bat speed to hit major-league pitching consistently, and he has no power......He probably has a future as a backup infielder if he can stop rolling over to third base and shortstop." Keith Law, 2006
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Soldier field should be on this list if not for the spaceship they threw inside the original stadium....many a great sporting event held there from a wide variety of sports, especially historically.

 

Golf wise, I'd put Pebble Beach over Augusta on this list. College hoops-wise, Cameron indoor doesn't come close to matching Pauley Pavillion or even Allen fieldhouse in terms of being iconic IMO.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Not sure why Wrigley would be on the list seeing as how the Cubs have spent the vast majority of their existence losing.

 

Bears played there a bunch when they were actually winning NFL titles, too - wrigley also saw some boxing and hockey events. I think it's there because parts of it are really old and its in a big market, making it "iconic".

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wrigley is also where Babe Ruth "called his shot", Bears won an NFL championship, and Gayle Sayers scored 6 TDs.
"Dustin Pedroia doesn't have the strength or bat speed to hit major-league pitching consistently, and he has no power......He probably has a future as a backup infielder if he can stop rolling over to third base and shortstop." Keith Law, 2006
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I’ll add Oregon’s Hayward Field:

 

It’s been the home of the Oregon Ducks’ Track & Field team since 1921. It’s one of only five ‘Class 1’ Track & Field venues in the US. It’s hosted multiple USATF championships, US Olympic Trials, and NCAA championships. It also hosts an annual professional event that attracts top athletes from around the world. Oregon has also won 7 NCAA men’s outdoor team titles (4th most all time).

 

Probably not a Top 10 venue, but certainly worth an honorable mention.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I’ll add Oregon’s Hayward Field:

 

It’s been the home of the Oregon Ducks’ Track & Field team since 1921. It’s one of only five ‘Class 1’ Track & Field venues in the US. It’s hosted multiple USATF championships, US Olympic Trials, and NCAA championships. It also hosts an annual professional event that attracts top athletes from around the world. Oregon has also won 7 NCAA men’s outdoor team titles (4th most all time).

 

Probably not a Top 10 venue, but certainly worth an honorable mention.

 

Did you know that the inner oval in the University of Oregon logo is meant to represent the track at Hayward? The outside oval is the shape of Autzen Stadium.

"Dustin Pedroia doesn't have the strength or bat speed to hit major-league pitching consistently, and he has no power......He probably has a future as a backup infielder if he can stop rolling over to third base and shortstop." Keith Law, 2006
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Verified Member
I'd agree with MSG being the clear choice with the diversity of events in so many different sports. After that it seems rather up in the air, or tends to be very sport specific.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The Rose Bowl has held multiple Super Bowls & college playoff/ championship games. That will place it ahead of Lambeau on any Icon list in the minds of most people.

For a Packers fan, Lambeau is iconic. Bears fans feel the same about Soldier Field & Steelers fans feel the same about Three Rivers & now Heinz field.

For a non-Packer fan (& most of the country are NOT Packer fans), Lambeau is cold place where a handful football games are played each year. 1 memorable game (the Ice Bowl) was played at Lambeau in the minds of most people so it would not be top 5, let alone #2.

I've lived in the LA, NYC, and Chicago areas and have been all over the country (55 different airports in the United States). I can tell you that what is bolded above is not true. When people find out I'm from WI and we talk about football, many people view Lambeau Field as a destination stadium and have a strong desire to go to a game there. Lambeau field is to a football fan every bit what Fenway Park is to a baseball fan.

 

I've never heard that about the Rose Bowl stadium. The Rose Bowl stadium is a place to go to watch the Rose Bowl game and people have a desire to go to the game, but it is not a destination stadium - nobody talks about the stadium. I would not be surprised if it stops hosting the Rose Bowl in the very near future now that they have SoFi stadium. It's hosted Super Bowls by default because of a lack of other options, but it will never host another one.

 

I wouldn't put the Rose Bowl stadium as the most iconic stadium in LA - I'd go with the Coliseum before the Rose Bowl.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's MSG and it's not even close. Every other stadium/venue is niche to the sport of whatever team plays there. The LA Coliseum is second.

 

I think it's ironic that MSG is also the one venue that the team who plays there is probably towards the bottom of its perceived iconic status. I will say that "the Garden" has actually been several different venues at difference locations across New York - the current location has been around since the mid 1960s....so many of the boxing matches and other events that helped make this venue famous actually occurred at a different building and address than the current venue.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1. MSG

2. Lambeau

 

 

3. Fenway

4. Rose Bowl

5. Wrigley

6. Augusta

7. Churchill Downs

 

Maybe Augusta could be higher, but I don't care about golf. However, I feel it is iconic because I know what it is without watching any golf. I could not name a single race track, so iconic they are not.

 

Cameron is a strange inclusion. #1 Because I would take Allen Fieldhouse as an iconic venue over it for college basketball (probably slightly bias) and #2 I feel like there have to be some college football stadiums that are surely more iconic to people if one was looking to include a college venue.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

To piggyback on Chorizo's post, MSG opened in 1968. It's the fourth building with that moniker and none of the previous ones were at the current location. I think some people think it's been around forever but it really hasn't. And looking at notable sports events...surprisingly meh (I have bolded the most important one):

 

The Knicks clinched the 1970 NBA Finals at the arena in the seventh game, remembered best for Willis Reed's unexpected appearance after an injury. The Rangers would later end their 54-year championship drought by winning the 1994 Stanley Cup Finals on home ice. Finally, the 1999 NBA Finals was decided in the Garden, with the San Antonio Spurs defeating the Knicks in five games.

 

Many of boxing's biggest fights were held at Madison Square Garden, including the Roberto Durán–Ken Buchanan affair, the first Muhammad Ali – Joe Frazier bout and the US debut of Anthony Joshua that ended in a huge upset when he was beaten by Andy Ruiz

 

MSG has hosted the following All-Star Games:

 

NHL All-Star Game: 1973, 1994

NBA All-Star Game: 1998, 2015

WNBA All-Star Game: 1999, 2003, 2006

All American Karate Championships held in 1968 & 1969 won by Chuck Norris 1970 was won by Mitchell Bobrow.

UFC held its first event in New York City, UFC 205, at Madison Square Garden on November 12, 2016. This was the first event the organization held after New York State lifted the ban on mixed martial arts.

"Dustin Pedroia doesn't have the strength or bat speed to hit major-league pitching consistently, and he has no power......He probably has a future as a backup infielder if he can stop rolling over to third base and shortstop." Keith Law, 2006
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Community Moderator
Watching ESPN this morning and they posted a poll asking what is the most iconic American sports venue. The choices are:

 

Augusta National

Cameron Indoor Stadium

Churchill Downs

Fenway Park

Lambeau Field

Madison Square Garden

Rose Bowl

Wrigley Field

 

IMO, the first two should not be on the list. Cameron Indoor was nothing until around 1990, and Augusta shouldn't be on there because of bigotry until around 1990 (and beyond).

 

For me, it's an easy choice - Madison Square Garden because of the variety of major events that it has hosted. NBA finals, Stanley Cup finals, epic boxing matches, NCAA tournament games, Wrestlemanias. It's outdated now and has been for a while, the venue itself is nothing special and boxing is no longer what it was, but you add the variety and magnitude of events it has hosted with the prestige of New York city and it's #1.

 

I'd put Lambeau at #2. Fenway and Wrigley are in the conversation, but when the teams that play there go 100 years without a championship it doesn't really carry as much weight as winning 13 world championships. Lambeau has never and will never host a Super Bowl, but it's not a one-trick pony like Churchill Downs or the Rose Bowl where it's relevant one day a year.

 

The Rose Bowl has held multiple Super Bowls & college playoff/ championship games. That will place it ahead of Lambeau on any Icon list in the minds of most people.

For a Packers fan, Lambeau is iconic. Bears fans feel the same about Soldier Field & Steelers fans feel the same about Three Rivers & now Heinz field.

For a non-Packer fan (& most of the country are NOT Packer fans), Lambeau is cold place where a handful football games are played each year. 1 memorable game (the Ice Bowl) was played at Lambeau in the minds of most people so it would not be top 5, let alone #2.

 

Old Cowboy stadium with the field size opening in the roof or the SuperDome will be more recognizable & jump to the minds of more people when asked to think about pro football venues..

 

The Rosebowl has also hosted multiple Olympic events and World Cup Soccer.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Iconic is an unusual word. Looking up the definition will get you a variety of meanings. If it means widely known and well-established, I don’t think MSG has the value it once did. The Knicks are horrid, beyond horrid for a big market team. The circus and boxing are outdated. I’m not sure if the avg. sports fan could even recognize the building from the outside, either.

 

Augusta and Cameron, I agree with another, are not iconic in the entire sports world. Golf and college basketball are not universally recognized as big time sports.

 

For the U.S., it’s football and baseball…. Football is king now, baseball then. Although, If the original Boston Garden were still around, that would be the answer, hands down. I think Lambeau has a a legit claim as being one of the top two or three iconic sports venues because it best represents the NFL and it’s upkeep/additions have been stellar.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Old Chicago stadium would've been a contender, similar to Boston Garden - Jordan Bulls, vintage Blackhawks hockey, some great historical boxing matches, concerts, political conventions, it even hosted the 1st NFL Championship game because the Bears didn't want to play outside in the snow
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Community Moderator
Old Chicago stadium would've been a contender, similar to Boston Garden - Jordan Bulls, vintage Blackhawks hockey, some great historical boxing matches, concerts, political conventions, it even hosted the 1st NFL Championship game because the Bears didn't want to play outside in the snow

 

Wow, I had no idea a game was played inside Chicago stadium. I had to look it up. Read a cool article about it. Thanks for dropping that cool bit of history on here.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Brewer Fanatic Contributor
Old Chicago stadium would've been a contender, similar to Boston Garden - Jordan Bulls, vintage Blackhawks hockey, some great historical boxing matches, concerts, political conventions, it even hosted the 1st NFL Championship game because the Bears didn't want to play outside in the snow

 

What a weird way to play an NFL Championship game.

 

60 yard field with condensed endzones? Let's do it!

 

Because of the limited dimensions of the indoor arena, special rules were adopted for the game:

 

The tanbark-covered field itself was only 80 yards long (60 yards between the goal lines)[19][20] and 45 yards wide, 10 yards narrower than the regulation width at the time.[11]

- The goal posts were moved from the endlines to the goal lines (the NFL itself would move the goalposts to the goal line from 1933 to 1974).[21]

- Every time a team crossed the 10-yard line, the ball was moved back 20 yards to allow for the shortened field.[9]

- For the first time, all plays started with the ball on or between the hash marks, which were ten yards from the sidelines.[21]

- It was also decided that due to the smaller field and indoor stadium, drop kicks and field goals would not be used in the game.[22]

 

Fun note, with their win the Bears finished 7-1-6, while Portsmouth finished the season 6-2-4. Green Bay was 10-3-1 in 14 games, but Chicago and Portsmouth had better regular season winning percentages and therefore faced off for the title.

 

What a weird year

 

EDIT: Even weirder; after 4 games the Bears were 0-1-3, with all three ties being 0-0, and their lose to Green Bay 2-0. Even though they didn't score a point until game 5, the Bears led the league is scoring that year.

Chris

-----

"I guess underrated pitchers with bad goatees are the new market inefficiency." -- SRB

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Verified Member

Outside the box thinking here. A couple years back ESPN did a ranking, not a poll, on something like this. They put the Boston Marathon course at #20. Yeah, I'm biased.

 

As for buildings, I would have to agree with MSG. The nation's largest city, the place that hosted many marquee events.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...