Hawks spending $142.5m in tax money on new seats, scoreboard, virtual golf simulator

What is Atlanta Hawks owner Antony Ressler buying with the $142.5 million in arena renovation money he’s getting from the city of Atlanta? What isn’t he buying! Here’s the list, culled from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s report:

  • In place of the six levels of luxury suites that took up one side of Philips Arena — which made room for more mid-level seats on the opposite side, but also meant those fans were left staring at this — there will be a mix of regular seating and smaller suites, in order to “increase interaction among fans” (read: not that many people want to buy Hawks suites, it turns out).
  • A new scoreboard that is three times bigger than the old one — which means three times better, right?
  • A courtside bar “almost close enough for patrons to shoot a three-pointer.”
  • A conference center.
  • A Swag Shop barber franchise owned by Atlanta rapper Killer Mike.
  • A Swing Suite golf simulator, which led to the PR quote of the day:

“Philips is a perfect complement to Topgolf because we’re really about sports entertainment,” said Ron Powers, president of Topgolf Swing Suites. “Topgolf is popular with those who are avid golfers as well as those who aren’t. We’ve found Swing Suite is really popular among millennials who may have a short attention span but have high engagement with technology.”

Poor millennials are being blamed for everything these days — now they’re even getting put down for their short attention spans by people who are trying to sell them on playing virtual golf. Which they can now do while not watching an NBA game, instead of doing so on their gaming devices in the comfort of their own homes, which they’ll want to do because … I don’t know, something about modern furniture? Anyway, thanks to Atlanta taxpayers for making that possible! And, of course, to Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, for his vision in realizing that an arena without computer golf is no arena at all.

One comment on “Hawks spending $142.5m in tax money on new seats, scoreboard, virtual golf simulator

  1. They can hang the golf simulator on millennials, but they’ll make their money on middle-aged dads taking their daughters to concerts. On the other hand, the ability to buy avocado toast at the courtside bar…