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A look back at EnergySolutions Arena

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The end result was not what the University of Hawai’i basketball team was looking for, but it was still quite an experience for the Warriors to play in the EnergySolutions Arena on Saturday.

The Warriors lost to Brigham Young, 90-70, but they are hoping that playing in an NBA arena and in front of a large and hostile crowd will help them later in the season – whether it be at the Big West Tournament in March, or perhaps even beyond.

JazzArena1

EnergySolutions Arena is home to the Utah Jazz, and a walk around the arena offers numerous reminders of that. Outside the main entrance are larger-than-life bronze statues of former Jazz greats Karl Malone and John Stockton.

The EnergySolutions Arena also hosts concerts and other performances, and last week, the Hawai’i vs. BYU game shared space on the electronic billboards outside the arena with future dates for the Harlem Globetrotters and pop star Taylor Swift.

The arena has a capacity of just under 20,000, and nearly 14,000 showed up to watch the Warriors play BYU. Probably around 97 percent of those fans were cheering for BYU, including a student section that remained standing for the entire game, and had choreographed moves and chants for the entire game.

The Warriors did have a small section of support, including family and friends of Aaron Valdes, Roderick Bobbitt and Garrett Nevels. Former Hawai’i players Hauns Brereton, Jace Tavita and Hiram Thompson were also in attendance.

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The Warriors returned to Honolulu on Sunday afternoon, and will take a few days off before returning to the practice court.

Sophomore forward Negus Webster-Chan, who injured his right ankle during pre-game warm-ups, traveled with the team but was still walking with crutches. His ankle was heavily taped, and he is expected to have the injury examined on Monday.

The team’s next game is scheduled for December 19 against Chaminade at the Blaisdell Center Arena.

17 Comments

  1. This is how BYU breaks teams that are not used to playing in altitude. When they feel that the team is winded they try to push the ball hoping that the team will crack. Simply put we cracked under the altitude. This was their game plan. Even more so when they saw that NWC would not come out to play. Take the altitude away and you got a close game. How else can you explain the fact that everyone had a decent to good game. BYU got the altitude and UH got the travel distance. Pick your poison. Would be a different story if they played in Hawaii.

    Much needed rest for the battle weary Warriors. This break is exactly what the doctor ordered. Time to heal, correct mistakes, and layout more plays/strategies. Diamond Head Classic getting closer. Love to see UH pull an upset and throw ESPN in a tailspin. When we do a giant kill they goin say who dat? Whea they come from? And we goin say, “We da Warriors and everyone’s worst nightmare.

  2. servante….well said…. Really, do we , all the new and older UH MBB fans, do we really appreciate what THIS UH MBB team, and quickly assembled great coaching staff are doing? I mean, I have never seen this happen to a UH athletic team in over 40 years. And Here, UH MBB could easily, easily, if all parts in place, guys not injured, even with the departure of coaches and a player, been 10-0… Incredible.,

    Key: This Team, with support of their families, whether LOI, or walkon preferred have bought into ONE OHANA.. ONE FAMILY,….no matter what is thrown at them, no matter the doubters.. no matter the question marks.. They Want to represent Hawaii,the University, the fans, and especially their Ohana/families.

    I have the greatest Respect for this Team.. 2014-15, My Favorite Team , that I have witnessed battling for UH and MBB in over 45 years !!
    The story is not finishe… This hiatus, is Perfect timing.. Hope that Negus xrays are okay, and he will be back for Chaminade game or Nebraska opening round game..and you know, servante…even if not.. This Team will win a lot of games.. They are finding a way to do it… A HUGE amount of props, kudos and credit goes to Coach Benjy Taylor, who has kept UH MBB in good shape !!

    Mahalo Coach Taylor and this Fantastic Fifteen.
    You are right, if NWC could play, and UH played sound defense etc, kept calm, they had BYU very, very nervous up in Utah at altitude.. bring BYU back here next year, and UH will run with them, and Beat Them like in the past, and in the future..

    So Very Proud of All of you , The University of Hawaii Men’s Baskteball Team, Rainbow True Warriors !!
    Go Bows !
    🙂

  3. This team is going to have a lot of experience under their belts by the time BWC starts. Playing with the pros, now playing in the Energy Solutions Arena, playing at altitude, playing for a new coach, playing without all the teammates there for various reasons, playing at altitude, and traveling quite a bit. Yes, we hope they are keeping up with their classes and that the Coaching staff is following up with them on that. At some point all this experience will kick in, in a big way. Someone said, One Ohana. I think they are right !

  4. I like what Benjy said after the game about this team getting better because of this trip. Playing in that environment against the altitude and the BYU fans, there really is no place on the road in the Big West can compare to that.

    The Utah Jazz arena looks huge in the pictures and video and how big is the statues of Malone and Stockton? If you look at the doors behind and then look how high up the building goes and then the statues in front. Wow.

  5. I forgot to say get well soon Negus! This team really needs him because he can do a lot of things and really helping the team out right now by playing in the post when he should be on the outside. Good thing they get a little break so he can rest the ankle and be ready for Diamond Head Classic. I wish this was like the old days in the WAC when we get a shot at BYU over here. I think would be different story if Negus is not injured and Janks can come in.

  6. Why is UH playing a game at the Blaisdell?

    Does UH administration hate their fans?

  7. Former UH Athlete, I think I heard Benjy or might of even been Gib way back when the schedule first came out explain this but I don’t remember exactly. I might be wrong but I think one of them said this is Chaminades home game and not UH so it was Chaminade that wanted to play in Blaisdell. I think it was something to do with Chaminade helping out UH by going to play on the other islands in the past years. I guess this means Chaminade get to keep all ticket revenue.

    To answer your second question is too easy!

  8. FUHA: A young student I know, is graduating with the Dec 20th fall session ceremony at SSC on Sat. morning? of that Date. I think, SSC manager, Rich S. , has to have time to setup, at least a day, or that evening for graduation ceremonies, the next day. Just a guess. So, UH would play at Blaisdell Center, instead of at SSC. I guess, UH could have scheduled the Chaminade game On Wed 17 or Thurs 18 of Dec. right? Anyways that is how it is.. tickets very cheap, compared to SSC, however it does take the Manoa Maniacs out of the picture, would imagine, more Chaminade students at that game.. if can have 2500, mix of UH and Chaminade fans I would be amazed.. that time of year, a lot of things happening at Blaisdell Concert, and Exhibition halls too.. Remember in the bast 20 years or more ago, Blaisdell was UH MBB team’s home court.. C & C.
    Yes, I wish the game was at SSC for the fans and the students to Finally have that 3500-4000 crowd.. This Team.. they need the support.. they are going to get better

    We just wish that Negus’ xray, and ankle can heal up, hope nothing broken..and he ready for Chaminade or DHC

    🙂
    Go Bows !!

  9. ChuckCheese:

    I never heard that one before.. that Silverswords deal was to have game at Blaisdell, so they would have homecourt advantage.. I remember, I think HPU , their homecourt is Blaisdell when available, they don’t have a gym, I think Chaminade has that ex Kam School Field house, and McCabe gym, think that St Louis schools has first use of those facilities..Either way, I think UH MBB team, just being in Honolulu again.. and if everyone healthy, will just run and gun and have fun.. That is why, a potential 3000-4000 attendance ticket sales, for SSC .. now UH is “on the road” again.. hey, UH wins that game.. they would be 4-2 away from SSC, .. which is a good thing..

    Don’t want to get started Chuck..the UH…oh no.. I just keep quiet.
    Support the Bows.. Backing the Rainbow Warriors !!
    🙂

  10. RunBows your answer about the graduation makes a lot of sense so maybe I am wrong but I know that UH not selling tickets for this game so I really think it is a Chaminade home game. And I know I heard somebody say that before but it was a while back and I must be getting old because I cant remember who said it. Of course it could just be another UH screw up again but I hope not because me and so many others would go off again!

    It would also make sense if this is a Chaminade home game that they move it to Blaisdell to draw the UH crowd and get 3000-4000 like you said. Thats way more than McCabe gym can hold and gives Chaminade some extra money.

  11. ChuckCheese:

    Maybe this year 2014 and end of Spring Session 2015 will have happy ending for us all.. hope so !! UH academics, and athletics. and Hawaii..

    Did a little search and here is what I got.. the Dec 19 2014 game(s)at Blaisdell , a Chaminade/UH and HPU/Montana St. Billings double header, two games for price of one.. so will probably benefit the DII schools ..

    I guess for us older(mature better yeah?) guys.. now it makes sense..you are probably right, or maybe we are both right. Graduation and to make money for not only Chaminade but for HPU too. That day.. 4:30pm game HPU vs. Montana State-Billings.. DII matchup, then featured game of double header, UH vs Chaminade. at 7:00pm :

    link: http://www.goswords.com/splash.aspx?id=splash_69&path=mbball

  12. However, how come UH, or MBB did not schedule game a few days earlier?
    Wed, 17th or Thursday 18th? Well you know…. nope won’t go there !
    🙂

  13. Looks like tickets for the Chaminade game are through Chaminade (Neal Blaisdell center and Ticketmaster), not UH. The game will be part of a 2 for 1 deal doubleheader (Hawai’i Pacific and Montana State-Billings will tip off the evening at 4:30 p.m.) . From Chaminade website .

    “Adult general admission seating will be $12 while senior citizens (age 60 and over) will be $8. Students ages 5-17 as well as college students with current valid IDs from any college will be $5. Children ages under 4 will be admitted free. Applicable fees will apply to purchases.

    Current Chaminade students, faculty and staff will be admitted free. A valid ID is required for entry. ”
    ——————————————————————————————————–
    It’s an exhibition game for Chaminade who were blown out on Dec. 6 by BYUH,
    87 – 104 .

  14. Too many D2 teams on the schedule this won’t help the bottom line Ben J. Gotta play a D1 schedule. You’re going to have a much smaller crowd going to the Blaisdell arena. bad move Warriors need to play a tougher schedule to build up the RPI

  15. Well good news…xrays negative for significant damage in Negus’s ankle..I feared if broken..it is just severe sprain..
    Chaminade game negus questionable..as long as he heals up and janks and nwc ready for DHC..
    Right servante ..throw espn completely off and uh mbb team end up in dhc championships game..

    speedy recovery to sammis and negus!!
    🙂

  16. Above report from BM blog..negus xray negative for significant damage. .questionable for Chaminade game
    speedy recovery sammis and negus!!
    🙂

  17. Wow! Lau Lau!
    Wakin’ Up… Thanks…
    Just Realized Chaminade Is a ROAD Game…
    Gotta Go BUY Blaisdell Tickets…
    Jus’ Like Maui…

    Good News On Negus!
    I Still Think he oughta get Serious on the D-1/NBA Weights…
    Might’ve Helped Prevent Rib/Ankle Injuries…

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