After 22 years, STAPLES Center is changing its name as the LA Kings’ home arena will become known as Crypto.com Arena.
From the “Frenzy at Figueroa” in 2001 to both of the club’s Stanley Cup victories, the LA Kings have celebrated some major achievements at STAPLES Center. However, as of December 25, the Kings’ home arena will have a new name: Crypto.com Arena.
While it has become the norm in North American sports, the Kings’ home arena was unaffected — immune, even — to this since first opening its doors in October 1999. Well, that will officially change in a little over a month now.
On Tuesday night, the arena owner, AEG (Anschutz Entertainment Group) announced the name change. A person with knowledge of the deal informed The Associated Press that the new deal will see Crypto.com paying $700 million over 20 years to rename the building, which is also the home to the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers, and the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks. Said sourced revealed this information on the condition of anonymity as the parties have yet to publicly announce the terms of the deal — one that is believed to be the richest naming rights deal in sports history.
Founded in 2016, Singapore-based Crypto.com is a cryptocurrency platform and exchange. Acquiring the new naming rights deal for the Kings’ home arena is just the latest in a plethora of activity across the global sports landscape within the last 12 months. Among the platform’s activities has included high-visibility sponsorship deals with, among others, the NHL’s Montreal Canadiens, Formula One, the UFC, Italy’s Serie A, and Paris St-Germain. Recently, Crypto.com has also purchased the uniform sponsor patch of the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers.
The arena’s final game as STAPLES Center will take place on Dec. 23 when the NBA’s Lakers host the San Antonio Spurs. The Lakers will also host the building’s first event under its new name, Crypto.com Arena, when they host the Brooklyn Nets on Dec. 25 as part of the NBA’s annual Christmas showcase.
As for the LA Kings, their last game under the STAPLES Center name takes place on Dec. 22 when they welcome the Edmonton Oilers to town; and their first game with their home arena’s new name will be on Dec. 28 when they host the Vegas Golden Knights.
In addition to the Kings’ pair of Stanley Cups, STAPLES Center is also home to other champions — the Lakers, who won six NBA titles since 1999, and the Sparks and their three WNBA crowns. Yet, while the teams may not be changing arenas, the shift in naming rights is nonetheless the end of an era — an iconic one, at that.
While name changes for sports venues are the reality of the sports business world, the changing of STAPLES Center to Crypto.com Arena marks a sad time for those who have called the iconic building home for so many years. The same goes for the fans who saw STAPLES Center as, for all intents and purposes, their home away from home, whether they were cheering on their beloved Kings, Lakers, Clippers, or Sparks.
Like any arena name change, calling the LA Kings’ home arena Crypto.com Arena will certainly take some getting used to. But, it is the beginning of a new era of sorts while, at the same time, marking a time to reflect on the past 22 years that was — from unfathomable heartbreak to unbelievable joy — cherishing the memories that STAPLES Center brought us while also looking ahead, feeling eager and excited for the memories that Crypto.com Arena will bring.