The Cavaliers officially ushered in a new era Tuesday, announcing the renaming of Quicken Loans Arena to Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse.
The change continues a trend across North America of corporate-sponsored names for sports venues. Gone are the days of Jacobs Field, Cleveland Municipal Stadium, and Gund Arena. The sponsorship dollars are just too much to turn down.
A large bulk of stadiums and arenas (especially in the pros) now have corporate sponsors tied to their names. While some have become natural in their own right, others are a bit more...unique.
Here are a few sports venue names that made us raise our eyebrows just a little bit.
Dignity Health Sports Park - Carson, California
This 27,000-seat complex has always found itself under the corporate umbrella, first as the Home Depot Center and later the StubHub Center before a deal was struck with the California-based non-profit. Besides being the permanent venue for the LA Galaxy of MLS, it is also the temporary home of the Los Angeles Charges, making it the smallest stadium in the NFL.
Guaranteed Rate Field - Chicago
Upon its christening in 1991, this stadium originally opened as Comiskey Park, borrowing the traditional name of its predecessor. However, following a more-than-decade sting as U.S. Cellular Field, the ballpark adopted its current identity in 2017, and the subsequent backlash led Rolling Stone to declare it "the worst stadium name in sports."
KFC Yum! Center - Louisville, Kentucky
The glistening new arena replaced the iconic Freedom Hall as the home of Louisville Cardinals basketball in 2010, and the name branding of KFC isn't all that surprising given the company's grand status in the state of Kentucky. Yet, it is the presence of the "Yum!" (complete with exclamation point) that still earns this name a little bit of good-natured ridicule.
Scotiabank Saddledome - Calgary, Alberta, Canada
It's not even the corporate sponsor that gets this one on our list. It's that this arena (originally built for the 1988 Calgary Olympics) is actually named the "Saddledome," due to its saddle-like design. The NHL's Flames have played under that saddle for over 30 years, with other names including Canadian Airlines and Pengrowth.
Smoothie King Center - New Orleans
This place was named (innocently enough) New Orleans Arena when it first opened in 2002, but the NBA's Pelicans later inked a 10-year deal with Smoothie King out of Dallas. As the team has never been past the second round of the playoffs, enjoying a nice, cold health drink may be the next best thing.
Talking Stick Resort Arena - Phoenix
We know there have been arenas named after hotels or resorts before, but we are pretty sure none have been named after "talking sticks." If you're ever taking in a Suns game at the venue, the resort itself is just a 24-minute drive away, and features nearly 500 rooms, multiple restaurants, and a casino to boot.
Vivint Smart Home Arena - Salt Lake City
The former Delta Center saw lots of great basketball in the 1990s, notably when the Utah Jazz took Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls to the brink in two straight NBA Finals. The new name, however, doesn't quite roll off the tongue as the old one one did. The company its now sponsored by is actually based in nearby Provo, and specializes in creating energy-friendly homes.