Posted by: Ben Hoeksel on August 23rd, 2010The author's views are entirely his or her own and may not reflect the views of the Utah Jazz.
Question to all of my fellow Jazz fans: have you ever sat on either: the front row, in a suite, the Lexus Club, or at the very top where they serve dinner? For those of us lucky enough to have done so, we all remember the exact game.
My pops is in the car business. One day when I was about 14, a guy came into their dealership and purchased a new Jeep Grand Cherokee. He had enjoyed doing business with my dad, and consequently said to him, “You know, I think I’m going to be busy driving this around tonight, would you be interested in my Jazz tickets for the game tonight, since my wife and I won’t be able to go?” Of course, my dad says yes. Being the guy that he is, he turns around and gives them to my older bro and me to go to the game. I don’t remember at what point I realized this, but they were front row seats. First (and only to this point) time ever I’ve been able to sit there. I remember walking down the stairs at the Delta Center. Understandably, the security guy stopped me and my 16 year old brother dead in our tracks when we were about halfway down the lower bowl. We showed them our tix, gave them a grin, and continued our happy walk down the stairs to the first row. I touched a basketball twice throughout the process. Once, one of the Sacramento Kings had a ball clang off the rim during warm-ups, and it bounced over to me. Pretty sweet. Even better, during a timeout in the 3rd, an official walked up to me, handed me the game ball and asked me to “warm it up for him” during the timeout. Like a starstruck dork, I rubbed the ball over and over in every direction trying to ensure the ball was nice and warm for Stock on the ensuing play.
I’ve sat in the suites 4 times. Those are awesome by themselves. The two big pros to the suites: food, and the restroom. It’s pretty weird to be in the fridge and grabbing a Dr. Pepper and turning around to 20+ thousand people. 3 of the 4 times were terrific. One of the times left a bitter taste in my mouth where half of the group at the game had the tv in the suite on watching American Idol or something. Not cool guys. Not cool. Each of those times were for business. Going to the suites on business is an interesting ordeal for a big Jazz fan, if any of you have ventured there. Do you go ahead and throw on your AK-47 jersey and your goofy dirty Jazz ball-cap, when you’re really there to impress clients? This was a difficult line for me to walk. Early on, it was clear I would not be able to temper my emotion during the game. I’d still stand and go nuts during player intros, I’d still scream at Dick Bavetta, etc. What was the biggest challenge really was making sure I was actually conversing with the other people in the suite instead of just watching the game.
I’ve never sat in the Lexus Club. I hear that’s pretty sweet. Unfortunately, I don’t think you can luck into tickets to the Lexus Club like I have for the suites or the first row.
Despite all of that, none of those qualified as my favorite Jazz game ever that I went to. Although the front row was a close second, none can beat February 3rd, 1992. I was there for Jr. Jazz, baby. Top of the top rows. (With apologies to the long time readers who’ve heard me talk about this game before) The game? Utah Jazz vs. Chicago Bulls. Triple OT. Jordan? Ejected for shoving the ref. Final Score? 126-123. Jeff Malone ices the game with 3 free throws in the third extra period.
I guess this just goes to show that it doesn’t take much money or the best seats to have a heck of a Jazz experience. That gives me hope. Because my poor 3 year old son is going to be stuck on the top row with me for a loooong time.
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