|Former names||America West Arena|
US Airways Center
Talking Stick Resort Arena
|Address||201 East Jefferson Street|
|Public transit||Convention Center|
|Owner||City of Phoenix|
|Operator||Phoenix Arena Development, L.P.|
|Broke ground||August 1, 1990|
|Opened||June 6, 1992|
|Construction cost||$89 million|
($164 million in 2020 dollars
$67 million (renovations)
($83.3 million in 2020 dollars
|Project manager||Huber, Hunt & Nichols|
|Structural engineer||Horst Berger/Severud|
|Services engineer||Flack + Kurtz|
|General contractor||Perini Building Company|
|Phoenix Suns (NBA) (1992–present)|
Arizona Rattlers (AFL/IFL) (1992–2019, 2021–present)
Arizona Sandsharks (CISL) (1993–1997)
Phoenix Coyotes (NHL) (1996–2003)
Phoenix Mercury (WNBA) (1997–present)
Phoenix RoadRunners (ECHL) (2005–2009)
It is currently the home arena for the Phoenix Suns of the National Basketball Association (NBA), the Phoenix Mercury of the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA), and the Indoor Football League's Arizona Rattlers. The ECHL's Phoenix RoadRunners played there from 2005 until they ceased operations at the conclusion of the 2008–09 season.
Located next door to Chase Field, home of the Arizona Diamondbacks, the arena is 1 million square feet (93,000 m2) in size on an 11-acre (4.5 ha) site. These two major league sports venues are half of those used by Phoenix area professional teams, the other two being State Farm Stadium and Gila River Arena in the neighboring Phoenix suburb of Glendale.
Phoenix Suns Arena is undergoing the second significant renovation in its history. The Phoenix City Council approved the plan on January 23, 2019 involving the arena, with the Phoenix Suns paying up to $80 million alongside any overrun costs. The first renovation was completed in March 2003 that had an 16,000-square-foot (1,500 m2) air conditioned glass-enclosed atrium built on the northwest side of the arena. That $67 million project was constructed to keep patrons cool while waiting in line for tickets or spending time inside the building before events. The arena upgrades have been done as part of the Suns' plan to keep it economically competitive after Gila River Arena opened. Former Suns owner Jerry Colangelo originally thought of the renovations after visiting Staples Center in Los Angeles and envisioned a similar entertainment district in Phoenix.
The COVID-19 pandemic forced a pause to the Suns' 2019–20 season and allowed for an early start to the current renovations. Up to 80% of all planned work was completed in time for the 2020 preseason home opener, a 112–107 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on December 16, 2020. The Mercury originally planned to play their 2020 WNBA season home games at Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum, but relocated all games to the IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. The Rattlers had their 2020 IFL season cancelled, but are scheduled to play their first home game of the 2021 season on June 12, 2021, against the Tucson Sugar Skulls.
Sports teams and events
Basketball, arena football, concerts, ice shows and other events such as wrestling are held in the arena.
The Coyotes hosted their first regular season home game in team history at Phoenix Suns Arena on October 10, 1996 with a 4–1 win over the San Jose Sharks. They finished the 1996–97 season with a 38–37–7 record to qualify for the Stanley Cup playoffs. That playoff appearance was short lived with a Game 7 loss to the Anaheim Ducks in the Western Conference Quarterfinals. Just over 7 years later, the team played their last home game within Phoenix city limits with a 5-2 loss to the Minnesota Wild on December 15, 2003.
Its most common nickname is "The Purple Palace", though during the Rattlers' season it is known as "The Snake Pit".
Phoenix Suns Arena has seen its share of basketball moments. Less than a year after its opening, it hosted 3 championship games of the 1993 NBA Finals between the Suns and the Chicago Bulls. The Mercury hosted WNBA Finals games in 1998, 2007 and 2009. The 1995 NBA All-Star Game, 2000 WNBA All-Star Game and 2009 NBA All-Star Game. were played at the arena.
The Rattlers have hosted four ArenaBowl games, with three played at Phoenix Suns Arena. They won ArenaBowl XI with a 55–33 win over the Iowa Barnstormers on August 25, 1997. They lost in their only championship game appearance at Gila River Arena, a 56–42 ArenaBowl XXIX loss to the Philadelphia Soul on August 26, 2016.
Among the notable boxing events held in Phoenix, they include Oscar De La Hoya's early bouts, Michael Carbajal's WBO world Junior Flyweight title against Josue Camacho in 1994 and Julio César Chávez ended his career with a fight at the arena.
In bull riding, the Professional Bull Riders hosted a Built Ford Tough Series (formerly the Bud Light Cup) at the arena between 1999 and 2002. The annual event moved to Giendale in 2004 before it returned to downtown Phoenix in March 2014.
Frank Sinatra gave one of his last concerts on December 10, 1993 at Phoenix Suns Arena.
Van Halen made a stop in Phoenix on April 1, 1995 as part of their The Balance "Ambulance" Tour.
Depeche Mode performed during 3 separate tours at the arena. They were on December 14, 1998 (Singles Tour), August 10, 2001 (Exciter Tour) and August 23, 2009 (Tour of the Universe). Their 2009 show had 7,635 people in attendance and was recorded for the band's live albums project Recording the Universe.
Ariana Grande opened her Dangerous woman Tour at the arena on February 3, 2017.
Construction began on August 1, 1990 as former Suns owner Jerry Colangelo envisioned a need for a new arena to be built in Phoenix to replace Arizona Veterans Memorial Coliseum. About 27 months later, Phoenix Suns Arena was officially inaugurated with the Suns' 1992–1993 season opening 111–105 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on November 7, 1992. Simultaneously, it also was Charles Barkley's first regular season game as a Sun. Despite the fact that the Suns had lost the 1993 NBA Finals to the Chicago Bulls, a parade was still held and attracted more than 300,000 Suns fans. It made its way through downtown Phoenix and finished at the new arena.
This section needs additional citations for verification. (March 2009)
When the original Winnipeg Jets publicly announced their intention to relocate to Phoenix for the 1996–97 NHL season, the arena was quickly reconfigured to accommodate ice hockey. Unlike most multipurpose arenas, it was not designed with an ice hockey rink in mind. Its tight seating configuration suits basketball very well, but made it logistically difficult to fit a standard NHL rink onto the floor. The lower level had to be sheared in half to fit the rink and create retractable seating.
As it turned out, the result was completely inadequate for the Coyotes. Three entire sections at one end of the ice hung over the boards. Fans sitting in those sections could not see 1⁄4 of the ice (including one of the nets) except on the video boards. The problem was so serious that after the team's first season in Phoenix, the team had to curtain off some seats in the areas where the view was particularly obstructed, cutting listed capacity from around 18,000 seats to 16,210.
The Coyotes added a second video board for an area where the view was particularly obstructed. They also put up numerous proposals to improve sight lines and boost the seating capacity back over the 17,000 mark. They also had to sell many obstructed-view tickets at a reduced price. Additionally, an unfavorable lease caused further financial troubles that impacted the team for much of the time they played at the arena. These were factors in driving them into bankruptcy in 2009. The Coyotes moved into Gila River Arena nearly midway through the 2003–04 NHL season.
The previous year, America West purchased rival carrier US Airways. Although America West was the surviving airline, it took the US Airways name as did the venue. This was the second arena that the company owned the naming rights after the now-demolished US Airways Arena (formerly Capital Centre) in Landover, Maryland.
The name change to Talking Stick Resort Arena was completed in September 2015, in time for the start of the 2015–16 Phoenix Suns season.
After negotiations on a contract extension stalled earlier on in the year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Talking Stick Resort officially announced the naming rights deal expired on November 6, 2020. Until a new agreement is reached, the venue will be known as Phoenix Suns Arena; prior to this, it was briefly known as PHX Arena.
- "2014–15 Phoenix Suns Media Guide" (PDF). Phoenix Suns. p. 344. Retrieved January 30, 2015.
- Condor, Bob (June 9, 1993). "Suns' Year-old Arena Colangelo's Pride And Joy". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved September 19, 2011.
- 1634 to 1699: Harris, P. (1996). "Inflation and Deflation in Early America, 1634–1860: Patterns of Change in the British American Economy". Social Science History. 20 (4): 469–505. JSTOR 1171338. 1700-1799: McCusker, J. J. (1992). How much is that in real money?: a historical price index for use as a deflator of money values in the economy of the United States (PDF). American Antiquarian Society. 1800–present: Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Retrieved January 1, 2020.
- Ballparks.com – US Airways Center
- Joseph Denardis – Experience
- Severud Associates – Projects
- Flack + Kurtz Sports Experience Archived February 27, 2012, at the Wayback Machine
- "Perini Building Company – Sports Projects". Archived from the original on September 8, 2012. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
- Wiles, Russ (December 2, 2014). "US Airways Center's new name: Talking Stick Resort Arena". The Arizona Republic. Gannett Company. Retrieved February 16, 2015.
- Schwartz, David (May 26, 2003). "Suns Hopes Rise With 'Reinvented' NBA Arena". SportsBusiness Journal. Retrieved May 16, 2012.
- (October 27, 2003) Facelift At Arena Keeps It In Vogue
- "Suns find some rhythm with starters, fall to Lakers in preseason play". Arizona Sports. December 16, 2020. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
- "IFL Cancels Remaining 2020 Season". azrattlers.com. April 13, 2020. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
- "Arizona Rattlers Announce Schedule for 2021 IFL Season". azrattlers.com. November 17, 2020. Retrieved December 18, 2020.
- Baum, Bob (August 25, 2016). "Philadelphia Soul, Arizona Rattlers set for Arena Bowl showdown". The Morning Call. The Associated Press.
- "Phoenix selected as host for 2009 NBA All-Star game". Yahoo! Sports. November 7, 2007. Retrieved November 7, 2007.
- "Suns 111, Clippers 105". Eugene Register-Guard. (Oregon). Associated Press. November 8, 1992. p. 8E.
- Ballparks.com – Phoenix Coyotes (Past)
- "Phoenix Suns, Phoenix Mercury and Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community announce Talking Stick Resort Arena" (Press release). US Airways Center. December 2, 2014. Retrieved December 2, 2014.
- "Talking Stick Resort's naming agreement for Suns arena concludes". Arizona Sports. November 6, 2020. Retrieved November 13, 2020.
- Phoenix Suns Arena
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