Oakland Arena is an indoor arena located in Oakland, California, United States. From its opening in 1966 until 1996, it was known as the Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Arena. After a major renovation completed in 1997, the arena was renamed The Arena in Oakland until 2005 and Oracle Arena from 2006 to 2019. It is often referred to as the Oakland Coliseum Arena as it is located adjacent to Oakland Coliseum. Oakland Arena seats 19,596 fans for basketball.
Venue viewed from I-880 (c. 2007)
|Former names||Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum Arena (1966–1996)|
The Arena in Oakland (1997–2005)
Oracle Arena (2006–2019)
|Address||7000 Coliseum Way|
|Public transit|| AC Transit: 45, 46, 46L, 73, 90, 98, 356, 646, 657, 805|
Alameda County East Oakland Shuttle
Amtrak: Capitol Corridor at Oakland Coliseum
Harbor Bay Business Park Shuttle
|Owner||Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum Authority (City of Oakland and Alameda County)|
|Broke ground||April 15, 1964|
|Opened||November 9, 1966|
|Construction cost||US$24 million (original)|
$121 million (1996–97 renovation)
|Architect||Skidmore, Owings and Merrill|
|General contractor||Guy F. Atkinson Company|
|California Seals (WHL) 1966–1967|
Oakland Oaks (ABA) 1967–1969
California Golden Seals (NHL) 1970–1976
Golden State Warriors (NBA) 1971–2019
San Francisco Golden Gaters (WTT) 1974–1978
Golden Bay Earthquakes (NASL/MISL) 1982–1984
Oakland Skates (RHI) 1993–1995
California Golden Bears (NCAA) 1997–1999
Oakland Panthers (IFL) 2020–
The arena was the home of the Golden State Warriors from 1971 to 2019; for the 1996–97 season, however, the team played at San Jose Arena while Oakland Arena underwent extensive renovations. The California Golden Bears of the Pac-10 played the 1997–98 and 1998–99 seasons at the arena while their primary home, Harmon Gym, was being renovated into Haas Pavilion. For some years before then, the Bears played occasional games against popular non-conference opponents at the arena.
The Oracle Arena has hosted games of the NBA Finals in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019, where the Warriors won the NBA championship in 2015, 2017, and 2018. That 2015 title was the first time since 1975 the Warriors won the title; however, Games 2 and 3 of the 1975 NBA Finals were played at the Cow Palace in San Francisco, as the Coliseum was unavailable at the time. The 2017 championship was the first time that a San Francisco-area team won a title in their home venue since the Oakland Athletics in the 1974 World Series.
The arena's first tenants were the California Seals of the Western Hockey League, who moved across the bay from the Cow Palace in 1966. The owners of the San Francisco Seals had been awarded an expansion franchise in the National Hockey League, on the condition they move out of the Cow Palace and into the then-new Oakland Coliseum Arena. The team changed its operating name from San Francisco Seals to California Seals in order to draw fans from both San Francisco and Oakland. The California Golden Seals continued to play at the arena after having transferred to the NHL, until the team moved to Cleveland after the 1975–76 NHL season.
The Coliseum hosted the American Basketball Association's Oakland Oaks (1967–1969), a charter member of the new ABA in 1967. The Oaks signed San Francisco Warriors star Rick Barry away from the rival National Basketball Association in 1968. The team was owned by entertainer Pat Boone and also had stars Larry Brown and Doug Moe on its roster. Brown and Barry are in the Basketball Hall of Fame. After a 22–56 record in their first season, the Oaks went 60–18 during the regular season in 1968–69. The Oaks then defeated the Denver Rockets, New Orleans Buccaneers and finally the Indiana Pacers in the playoffs to capture the ABA Championship. However, the team was plagued by poor attendance and Boone sold the team following their ABA Championship. They were relocated to Washington and became the Washington Caps.
The Bay Bombers (Roller Derby, 1966–1973) as well as the Golden Bay Earthquakes of the original MISL during the 1982–83 season and the Oakland Skates, a professional roller hockey team active from 1993 to 1995, all played there. WWE also holds professional wrestling shows at the arena.
Over three decades, the arena grew outdated, lacking the luxuries of newer ones. With just over 15,000 seats, it was one of the smallest venues in the league. Rather than building a new arena in Oakland, San Francisco or San Jose, the decision was made to proceed with a US$121 million renovation that involved tearing out much of interior and building a new seating bowl within the existing structure. The original walls, roof and foundation remained intact, similar to the rebuild of KeyArena in Seattle. The renovation began in mid-1996 and was completed in time for the Warriors return in the fall of 1997 (they played the 1996–97 season at the San Jose Arena, now the SAP Center at San Jose, home of the NHL's Sharks). Included in the renovation was a new center overhead LED scoreboard and 360-degree fascia display. The new configuration seats 19,596 for basketball.
Oracle naming rights dealEdit
On October 20, 2006, the Golden State Warriors and Oracle Corporation announced that the Oakland Arena would be known as Oracle Arena for a 10-year term. A press conference was held on October 30. "The O", as it is referred to, continued to be managed by Oakland–Alameda County Authority (JPA) and SMG. The JPA approved the deal at its November 10 meeting.
After the Warriors' resurgence since the 2012–13 season until the 2018–19 season, Oracle Arena was reckoned as one of the loudest arenas in the NBA. It was often called "Roaracle" because of the painfully high decibel levels sometimes generated at Warriors games. Shortly after the Warriors moved to San Francisco in 2019, the arena reverted to its old Oakland Arena moniker.
By the end of the 2016–17 regular season, Oracle had sold out 230 consecutive home games, a streak that continued throughout the team's playoff run. Oracle drew over 18,000 people per game for 12 straight seasons.
Elvis Presley kicked off his second tour of 1970 at the Coliseum on November 10, 1970. He would return again on November 11, 1972.
Marvin Gaye made his official return to live performing and touring at the Coliseum Arena on January 4, 1974 and this show was the basis for his 1 million-selling live album, Marvin Gaye Live! At the time, music industry executives cited the tour as a "heralded event" as Gaye made a comeback to live touring nearly 4 years after the death of his late singing partner Tammi Terrell.
Nirvana performed concert at the Oakland Coliseum Arena in 1993, during their In Utero Tour.
The Grateful DeadEdit
The Grateful Dead played more concerts at this venue than at any other, with 66 shows between 1979 and 1995, and their December 16, 1992 concert at the arena was released as Dick's Picks Volume 27, along with bonus tracks from their December 17, 1992 concert at the arena.
Warriors move across the BayEdit
Early in 2013, the Warriors announced they would build a new arena in San Francisco and move back to the city. It was originally suggested that the arena would be built on the decaying sites of Piers 30–32 near the foot of the Bay Bridge, but the plan was met with opposition due to concerns about traffic, environmental impacts and obstruction of views. In April 2014, the Warriors purchased 12-acres in Mission Bay as the site for a new 18,000-seat arena planned to open for the 2018–19 NBA season. The new location eliminated the need for voter approval, which would have been required for the original site, though it had been unanimously approved by the San Francisco Supervisors in November 2012. Because of delays due to litigation filed by arena opponents the opening season was pushed to the start of the 2019–20 NBA season.
The new arena was named the Chase Center. On January 9, 2019, the San Francisco Giants announced that their home AT&T Park would be renamed Oracle Park, with the Oracle naming rights moving there from the arena. The Golden State Warriors played their final regular season game at Oracle Arena on April 7, 2019 with a 131–104 win over the Los Angeles Clippers. Notably, the team decided to wear their 2006-07 "We Believe" uniforms for that game, with the uniform choice not being revealed at any point beforehand until the Warriors players took off their warm-up uniforms shortly before tip-off, much to the delight of the home crowd. The Warriors played their final playoff game at Oracle Arena on June 13, 2019, a 114–110 loss to the Toronto Raptors in Game 6 of the NBA Finals. The loss ended the Warriors' quest for a third consecutive NBA championship.
The arena remains open under its original name of the Oakland Arena after the Warriors' departure, and continues to be a popular concert venue in addition to being the home of the Oakland Panthers of the Indoor Football League beginning in 2020.
The seating capacity for basketball has expanded from 13,000 to 19,000 in over a half-century of use:
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- Golden State Warriors Surprise Everyone, Wear Forgotten Throwbacks
- "2011-2012 Golden State Warriors Media Guide" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2018-02-16. Retrieved 2012-04-25.
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