By Tom Fetters
After the number of memorable events that took place over the years in the Spectrum in Philadelphia, it seems the old arena was due to go out in a blaze of glory.
After all, Bobby Clarke and the Flyers closed out their 1974 Stanley Cup championship there, Dr. J and the Sixers took the first two games on the way to sweeping Magic and the Lakers in the 1983 NBA title series there and Duke’s Christian Laettner hit the buzzer-beater against Kentucky in the 1992 NCAA men’s basketball tournament that sent his team to the Final Four.
Given the dramatic events that took place inside, it seems a fitting finish for the Spectrum would be a dramatic implosion – a choreographed collapse on the order of Pittsburgh’s Three Rivers Stadium or Seattle’s Kingdome. But officials ruled out an implosion for the Spectrum because of the arena’s construction.
As a result, the six-minutes-plus video of Tuesday’s wrecking-ball action at the Spectrum was pretty much without drama, as the orange wrecking ball knocked out a few bricks and windows.
The 43-year-old building’s demolition is expected to take four to five months, according to The Associated Press.
Compared with the exciting events it hosted, the Spectrum’s demise looks to be a yawner.
Tom Fetters is a copy editor at The Daily Reporter. He still roots for Kentucky’s Deron Feldhaus to block Laettner’s shot every time he watches that Elite Eight video.