So, Madison Square Garden sucks
Worse than I could have possibly expected from the “World’s Most Famous Arena”. It was just bad, not fun at all. To show you all WHY the experience was so bad, here’s our view.
|That big thing up there was the concourse.|
In addition to the obvious fact that we couldn’t see the entire playing surface at one time (if I stood up, I could see the near side, but not the far zone, if I sat, it was the opposite), there was the very noticeable slight of NOT BEING ABLE TO SEE THE SCOREBOARD. I get it, we were in the cheap seats, I was expecting to be peeking around a girder or something. But this was ridiculous. It’s like they didn’t even take into account the view of half the people in the 400 section when they added the concourse/balcony above our seats. Really, they should either expand the balcony down and get rid of the 400 section by us, or get rid of the overhang which blocks off our view.
|Taken from the balcony (which blocked our view)|
Of course, the lack of true stadium seating in the section was also an impediment to our view. The flat seating ensured that someone’s hat was right in my view of the goal. It was quite fun (*sarcasm). The fact that the seating in the 400 section over in the West side was crammed in for no reason but to add to the capacity is ridiculous. Upwards of 1000 people couldn’t see any scoreboard or half the ice (The people in row G above us left before the puck dropped). Part of it is due to the shape of the building, where the roof isn’t a proper arch (or semi-sphere, or whatever) and the scoreboard hangs lower, but still they could remove some seats so everyone gets a quality seat.
However, these may not even be the worst part of the experience in the nosebleeds. The absolute worst part is the lack of restrooms. On the 400 level (which was also the rooms the balcony used) there were a grand total of 6 urinals.
There are more beer taps in the area than there are urinals. Just contemplate that idea right now. That large concourse which blocks the view in the 400 section? It has no restrooms. So all the people that get the seats that block our view come down to the 6 urinals and 2 stalls in the 400s.
As a final gripe, the “World’s Most Famous Arena” couldn’t even switch the escalators down, they just turned them off. It was just terrible in every respect. I know it’s in the middle of a renovation, but honestly that section should have been removed years ago, it’s just bad.
The contest, between the Rangers and the nearby Islanders was intense. The two teams are historic rivals, and the multiple brawls in the game showed it. Were it not for the excellent play of Henrick Lundquist, the contest would have been extremely close. He played like a madman, and was almost matched by Evgeni Nabokov for the Islanders. The Islanders had bursts where they were in the zone for minutes at a time, but just couldn’t get one through.
So, for the TL:DR group out there, the Garden is terrible, and the game was great.
|This picture pretty much sums up the entire experience.|
Since I'm still in NYC, I don't have a new pic of the big board to show you, I'll have it later to show.