Former names Spectrum (19671994)
The Spectrum was used for many basketball tournaments, including Big Five games, eight Atlantic Ten Conference tournaments (1977, 1983, 19972002), the 1975, 1980 and 1992 NCAA East Regional (site of the famous last-second shot by Christian Laettner of Duke to beat Kentucky), and the 1976 and 1981 Final Fours (both won by Bobby Knight's Indiana Hoosiers). Smaller conferences preferred holding tournament games at this venue over the larger Center nearby.
Although both the Flyers and 76ers moved across the parking lot to the new and larger Wachovia Center in 1996, the arena remained in place and was used by the Philadelphia Phantoms of the AHL, the Philadelphia Kixx of the NISL, the Philadelphia Soul of the Arena Football League for Saturday home games, and a variety of other sporting events and concerts.
The Philadelphia Spectrum, formerly known as the CoreStates Spectrum (19961998), First Union Spectrum (19982003), and Wachovia Spectrum (since 2003) is a now-closed indoor arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. It opened in the Fall of 1967 as part of what came to be known as the South Philadelphia Sports Complex, it eventually seated 18,136 for basketball and 17,380 for ice hockey, Arena football, indoor soccer, and indoor lacrosse after several expansions of its seating capacity.
The building was formally closed
on October 31, 2009, after a four-night concert stand by Pearl Jam.
It is planned that the arena will eventually be razed to make way for
a hotel in the Philly Live! complex
Ground was broken on the arena on June 1, 1966, by Jerry Wolman and then-Philadelphia Mayor James Tate. Construction was finished in 16 months at a cost of $7 million. The first event at the arena was the Quaker City Jazz Festival on September 30, 1967, produced by Larry Magid.The 76ers moved there from Convention Hall. Lou Scheinfeld, former President of the Spectrum, explained that the name "Spectrum" was selected to evoke the broad range of events to be held there. "The 'SP' for 'sports' and 'South Philadelphia,' 'E' for 'entertainment,' 'C' for 'circuses,' 'T' for 'theatricals,' 'R' for 'recreation,' and 'UM' as 'um, what a nice building!" Scheinfeld also said that a seat in the city's first superbox initially cost $1,000 a year: "For every Flyers game, Sixers game, circus, you name it, you got 250 events for $1,000."
On March 1, 1968, wind blew part of the covering off the Spectrum's roof during a performance of the Ice Capades, forcing the building to close for a month while Mayor Tate fought with Philadelphia DA Arlen Specter over responsibility for the construction of the roof, and the damage was repaired.
In the 1970s, the venue's location
on Broad Street and the team's reputation for fisticuffs led to the
nickname "Broad Street Bullies".
The Flyers won their first Stanley Cup at the Spectrum on May 19, 1974, defeating the Boston Bruins, 10, in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals in front of a then-capacity crowd of 17,007.
Perhaps the most important and emotional hockey game or sporting event of any kind ever held there, however, came at the height of the Cold War on January 11, 1976, when the Flyers became the first NHL team to defeat (by 41) the vaunted hockey team of the Soviet Central Red Army.
Ten NHL or NBA playoff championship
series were hosted at the Spectrum. The Flyers competed in the Stanley
Cup Finals in 1974, 1975, 1976, 1980, 1985, and 1987. The 76ers played
in the NBA Finals in 1977, 1980, 1982, and 1983. The 1976 and 1992 NHL,
and 1970 and 1976 NBA All-Star Games were also held here. The AHL Phantoms
also won their first Calder Cup title on Spectrum ice before a sellout
crowd of 17,380 on June 10, 1998, by defeating the Saint John Flames,