The Cleveland Cavaliers are set to play their final game ever at “The Q” Tuesday night as they are getting a new home ahead of the 2019-2020 season. Well, not really. But… sort of?
According to reports, Tuesday’s “major announcement” from the Cavaliers is actually to inform fans and the world that Quicken Loans Arena — home of the Cavaliers, Cleveland Gladiators, Lake Erie Monsters, and downtown concert venue — will be renamed.
The new Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse will now be what we call the former Gund Arena. All just as we were starting to maybe, finally, sort of, get used to calling it “The Q.”
The new name is actually a subsidiary of current naming rights owner Quicken Loans, one of Cavs’ owner Dan Gilbert’s many companies.
(For what it’s worth, I tried looking up the differences between a field house and an arena without much success. But I did find the only other field house in the NBA is Bankers Life Fieldhouse, the home of the Indiana Pacers. So, there you go.)
The name change comes as a $185 million facelift to the arena, err, field house, rounds third base. The first event to be held in the newly renovated Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse will be when Cleveland plays host to local favorites The Black Keys.
Gilbert previously announced plans to update Quicken Loans Arena to add a large glass facade enclosure along Huron Road in order to create more “public space” inside the arena. Plus, more “neighborhoods” (an idea that mirrors when the Cleveland Indians updated
Progressive Field Jacobs Field with the “Corner” in right field) will be included throughout the venue to allow for fans to watch their event while eating at a partnering restaurant inside the building.
For Rocket Mortgage, the name change comes along with an extension in the naming rights deal, according to Crain’s Cleveland Business, ahead of several high-profile events like the 2022 NBA All-Star Game and the 2024 NCAA Women’s Final Four.
It has kicked off what is sure to be an exciting few months before the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse officially opens its doors in September for what we locals will call this “new” gathering spot.
The idea of updating a major gathering spot in downtown Cleveland with more space to walk around inside rather than outside in the notoriously unpredictable elements is a noble endeavor and makes at least as much sense as this does from Gilbert.
The fact that Gilbert and Cavs leadership thought that changing the name of the former Gund Arena from one Gilbert company to the name of a subsidiary qualified as “a major announcement” shows that sometimes ownership in this city doesn’t always understand how to get the fanbase excited.
Ahem, looking at you Mr. Dolan.
Following the (second) loss of Lebron James, the Cavs need help spurring interest in the franchise. Indeed there is somewhat of a future forming on the roster with the young players, but a more inviting home arena could provide a bit of excitement for fans and out-of-towners who come to Cleveland for head-lining concerts and events.
And all joking aside, Mr. Gilbert was the one Cleveland sports owner willing to spend truckloads of money to bring the city its first championship since the Lyndon B. Johnson administration. For that, he has indeed earned enough credit locally to name his stadiums–sorry, field houses, after whatever business he owns.
Plus, given the mobile nature of Rocket Mortgage Gilbert must think that as sports fans in the future are on their smartphones placing online bets, booking an Uber ride home, or finding a local bar/attraction to visit after their game is finished that maybe they can get themselves a new mortgage too.
Regardless, the updates to the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse are part of a larger trend in the NBA and North American sports to update the homes of our teams.
Quicken Loans Arena/Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse is currently the 6th oldest NBA venue. It will become the 5th oldest next season when Oracle Arena is shuttered in Oakland for the new home of the universally hated Golden State Warriors in San Francisco, dubbed the Chase Center.
In Cleveland, both the Q and
Progressive Field Jacobs Field were opened in 1994; with First Energy Stadium opening in 1999.
The Cavs play their last game in Quicken Loans Arena Tuesday against the Charlotte Hornets.