Say Goodbye to the “Madhouse on Madison”

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If you were partial to the “Madhouse on Madison” sign while watching your Chicago Bulls or Chicago Blackhawks you’re not going to be happy about this news. Reports confirm the sign has been removed at the United Center.

Bulls vice president of branding and communications, Susan Goodenow, explained the sign was removed as part of an initiative to improve “fan experience” at the United Center – a project two years in the making. Instead there will be a LED signage system to “heighten” in-arena entertainment and messaging. Sounds more like an additional opportunity for corporate sponsorship to advertise through the stadium.

The Madhouse sign we know and love was preserved for future use. So LAME.

da bulls

These guys would NOT approve

Blue Demons to the UC?

It looks as though I stand corrected. DePaul University has switched gears and is now considering moving their men’s basketball home games to the United Center instead of the All State Arena in Rosemont, reported the Chicago Tribune on Monday. Back in March the reports were saying DePaul president Reverend Dennis Holtschneider wanted to build an arena in Chicago specifically dedicated to the Blue Demons, but now it looks like DePaulians will be sharing a house with the Bulls and Blackhawks.

It’s definitely time for a change. The bus ride from Lincoln Park down to Rosemont in weekday rush hour traffic is pee-your-pants kind of tragic. DePaul has played at the arena in Rosemont for the past 30 years – it’s since gone through some name changes Rosemont Horizon and currently the AllState Arena. 

Here are a few things to consider:

  1. The United Center is closest to UIC’s campus – definitely not DePaul in Lincoln Park.
  2. There isn’t a direct CTA bus/L route from LP to the UC. I’m sure students will get bussed, but driving through city traffic can be just as rough as traffic on the expressway. The United Center is most accessible from the Loop on the lovely express Madison bus.
  3. DePaul fans barely filled up the All State – we’re going to look pathetic at the massive UC unless we significantly build up our fan base – maybe get a team with a winning record.
  4. Playing at the United Center has a prestigious aura since players like Derrick Rose and Michael Jordan have played/are playing on the very same court. It may very well be an excellent recruiting tool!

So all in all, we will see. More to come soon!

Carmelo Anthony Outshines Rose’s Return in Easter Thriller

I have to admit, today’s Bulls-Knicks game was hard to watch. There was some good, Derrick Rose returned to the Bulls lineup after missing 12 consecutive games due to a groin injury, he proved he was ready to make an impact, but he also has some work to do. No matter how many endurance drills you practice off the court, nothing is quite the same as the real deal. There was some bad, Carmelo Anthony had his best game as a Knick, 43 points and seven rebounds. He hit two clutch 3-point shots, one at the end of regulation and the other with 8.2 seconds left in overtime putting the Knicks up 100-99.

Rose looked really rusty and timid in the first quarter, he only had seven points. He must have found some confidence in the locker room at halftime because he had 14 points in the third quarter. He looked a bit more like himself in OT, but couldn’t make a tough floater for the winning shot. Rose played 39 minutes, had 29 points,  six rebounds, four assists, and eight turnovers. The main problem with Rose’s return was the turnovers, we all expected rustiness, but no one wants to give the ball to the opposing team.

The Bulls currently have the best record in the NBA, but after today’s loss they fell to 43-14. Coach Tom Thibodeau will continue to push his team to the number one seed, his starting lineup has only started 11 full games together this season and they lost for the third time in four games. Hopefully Tuesday night’s rematch at the United Center will bode better for the Bulls, but I am definitely not looking forward to another 8:30 p.m. start – it’s way past my bedtime.

John Lucas III = Carlton Banks?

John Lucas III showed up to the United Center last night with something to prove (there’s no way any of us forgot how Lebron James actually dunked over him in Maimi earlier this season, it still hurts to see it replayed as a top dunk). Lucas was like a spark off the bench with 24 points – missing his personal high by one point – he hit 9 of 12 shots and 3 of 5 3-pointers. He just didn’t miss much and Bulls fans were eating it up.

As I watched John Lucas III destroy the Miami Heat and his defender, who happened to be “King” Lebron James, I couldn’t help but notice the crazy resemblance between Lucas and Carlton Banks from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. I immediately had to google image “Carlton Banks” where I finally learned the actor’s name, it’s Alfonso Ribeiro if you didn’t know, and they’re definitely long lost brothers. I was reassured when I saw this photo floating around online, I was not alone in my observation.

There is one thing I know for sure, if Lucas can have more games like last night coming off the bench like an animal, I will be doing the Carlton Banks “happy dance” for all to see.

Toews is OK

When I heard Blackhawks Captain Jonathan Toews was involved in a car crash this morning, I have to admit my heart plummeted a bit. He’s so young, a great leader, one hell of a hockey player, and not to mention easy on the eyes. LUCKILY, Toews was not injured when his car (a Mercedes Benz obviously) struck a support beam of the CTA tracks on his way to their morning skate.

A source on the Blackhawks’ public relations team confirmed Toews was not injured in his minor one-car collision in downtown Chicago this morning while driving himself to the United Center.

I’m very curious what the cause of this accident was. Could the “upper body injury” – better known as a concussion – be the reason behind his random car accident? The injury is thought to have occurred during the 9 game road trip, Toews most likely suffered the concussion in the San Jose game on February 10. Also, reports stated people on the street were trying to get autographs from Toews. He just got in a car accident, leave the boy alone!

According to ABC Quenneville said the team is still unsure whether Toews will travel with the team Friday to California for back-to-back games against the Los Angeles Kings and Anaheim Ducks this weekend.