Thomas & Mack Center
|The Shark Tank|
|Location||4505 S. Maryland Parkway
Paradise, Nevada 89119
|Owner||University of Nevada, Las Vegas|
|Operator||University of Nevada, Las Vegas|
Arena football: 16,606
|Broke ground||October 21, 1981|
|Opened||December 16, 1983|
|Renovated||Undergoing (expected finish 2016)|
|Construction cost||$30 million|
|Architect||W2C Architects, John Carl Warneeke and Associates and
Cambeiro & Cambeiro Ltd. (Artturo Cambeiro, AIA and Domingo Cambeiro)
Ellerbe Becket (renovation)
|Structural engineer||John A. Martin & Associates|
|General contractor||Perini Building Company|
|UNLV Runnin' Rebels (NCAA) (1983–present)
Las Vegas Americans (MISL) (1984–1985)
Las Vegas Silver Streaks (WBL) (1988–1990)
Las Vegas Thunder (IHL) (1993–1999)
Las Vegas Flash (RHI) (1994)
Las Vegas Dustdevils (CISL) (1995)
Las Vegas Sting (AFL) (1995)
Las Vegas Silver Bandits (IBL) (1999–2000)
Las Vegas Gladiators (AFL) (2003–2006)
Las Vegas Sin (LFL) (2014)
Las Vegas Outlaws (AFL) (2015)
The Thomas & Mack Center is an arena located on the campus of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in Paradise, Nevada. It is home of the UNLV Runnin' Rebels basketball team of the Mountain West Conference.
The facility was first opened in the summer of 1983. The gala grand opening was held on December 16, 1983, featuring Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Diana Ross. The facility hosts numerous events, such as concerts, music festivals, conventions and boxing cards. For ring events, the capacity is 19,522; for basketball, the capacity is 18,000.
The arena underwent a major interior and exterior renovation in 1999. 2008 saw the installation of all new visual equipment, which included a 4-sided new center-hung LED widescreen scoreboard, which includes four LED advertising/scoring boards above it and a LED advertising ring below it to replace the one installed in 1995, a partial LED ring beam display covering 80% of the balcony's rim, a new 50' LED scorer's table display, a new shot clock system for the backboards, six wall-mounted locker room game clocks, two new custom scoreboards with fixed digital scoring and complete player stats and a new outdoor marquee LED video billboard.
The facility is named after two prominent Nevada bankers, E. Parry Thomas and Jerome D. Mack, who donated the original funds for the feasibility and land studies. In 2001, a smaller arena, Cox Pavilion, was added to the complex; the two arenas are directly connected. Cox Pavilion is used for smaller events; its main tenants are the UNLV women's basketball and volleyball programs.
Its primary tenant is the UNLV men's basketball team. The arena was nicknamed "the Shark Tank" after Jerry Tarkanian, whose nickname was Tark the Shark. Tarkanian was the UNLV coach when it opened, who won a national championship in 1990 and took the team to three additional Final Fours (four Final Fours overall). It also hosts the National Finals Rodeo annually. It also hosted the PBR World Finals from 1999 to 2015 before the event moved to the new T-Mobile Arena for the 2016 season. The facility also hosted the Las Vegas Thunder of the now defunct International Hockey League. It was also host of the Los Angeles Lakers pre-season games annually in October through 2013. In 2014 and 2015 their games were moved to MGM Grand Garden Arena.
In ArenaBowl XIX in 2005, the Colorado Crush, owned by John Elway defeated the Georgia Force on a field goal on the final play of the game. The game was ranked as one of the AFL's 20 best games ever in league history. The following year, 2006, the Chicago Rush, owned by Mike Ditka defeated the Orlando Predators 69-61 for the Rush's first championship in franchise history.
The arena has hosted professional wrestling shows, including WWF No Way Out 2001, an episode of Monday Night Raw with the first edition of Raw Roulette in 2002, WWE Vengeance 2005, and No Way Out (2008).
It has then hosted 2 consecutive weeks of Monday Night RAW on June 27, 2011 and July 4, 2011; the former featured CM Punk's infamous "pipebomb" worked shoot promo, and the latter had the show celebrating the United States Independence Day.
The venue hosted the 2007 NBA All-Star Game, marking the first time that this game was held in a city without a National Basketball Association (NBA) franchise. For the first time in NBA history, an on-campus college sports arena served as venue of an NBA All-Star Game. However, the arena had previously hosted home games for two NBA teams, the Utah Jazz and Los Angeles Lakers.
Utah used the arena in the mid-1980s, and was where Kareem Abdul-Jabbar broke Wilt Chamberlain's record for points in a career in 1984. The Lakers used the arena in 1992 for Game 4 of their first round playoff series against the Portland Trail Blazers, which Portland won 102–76. The NBA moved the game as a result of the Los Angeles riots.
The 1994-95 Big West Conference, 1997–99 Western Athletic Conference and 2000-03 Mountain West Conference men's basketball tournaments were held there as well. The Mountain West Conference basketball tournament returned in 2007 and will stay until 2013.
The FIBA Americas Championship 2007 was held at Thomas & Mack Center from August 22 to September 2.
Other sports events
On March 30, 1984, the USA Olympic volleyball team competed in the international competition at Thomas & Mack Center.
On September 12, 1992, Mexican boxing legend Julio César Chávez faced Hector "Macho" Camacho, and on September 15, 2012, his son Julio César Chávez, Jr. fought against Sergio Gabriel Martínez for the WBC Middleweight Belt.
The facility also hosts numerous other events, such as concerts, music festivals and conventions.
Rock band Mötley Crüe performed on March 16, 1984.
Sir Elton John's first performance at the arena was on August 24, 1984.
On November 14, 1987, comedian Eddie Murphy performed at the arena.
On January 25, 1992, Guns N' Roses performed at the arena during their Use Your Illusion Tour. It was the largest attendance single performance concert with 17,590 fans in attendance. Later, the record was broken by U2 on November 18, 2001 when U2 sold 17,771 tickets.
Pearl Jam performed at the arena on July 11, 1998.
Rock band Phish performed at the arena on October 30 and 31, 1998. During the Halloween Night performance, the band covered The Velvet Underground's "Loaded" album in its entirety during the second set. This performance is available on the band's official live release Live Phish Volume 16. The band returned to the arena for two shows in September 2000 and again for two more shows in February 2003.
On September 11, 2003, Thomas & Mack Center celebrated its 20th anniversary, hosting R.E.M. in concert.
On January 28, 2007, High School Musical: The Concert performed with over 10,000 people attending.
On October 19th, 2016, the arena hosted the final Presidential Debate for the 2016 presidential election.
Thomas & Mack Center & Cox Pavilion
- Timelines - University Building Completions
- Thomas & Mack Center architect: Ellerbe Becket
- "Richard Rizzo Vice Chairman of Perini Building Co.". Las Vegas Sun. June 28, 2007. Retrieved February 13, 2012.
- Rhoden, William C. (1991-07-01). "Built on Big-Time Basketball, U.N.L.V. Tries to Scrub Its Image". The New York Times. Retrieved 2013-04-06.
- Las Vegas awarded Mountain West tourney through 2013 website: Lasvegassun lasvegassun.com
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