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Best Memories of the Coliseum?

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Best Memories of the Coliseum?

Unread postby hermanfontenot » Sun May 20, 2007 12:58 pm

I’ve been perusing the internet the last few days, reading about and listening to audio of the Miracle of Richfield days, and I was just thinking about the Coliseum, which today is a large patch of flat grassland at the 303-I-271 intersection. It’s such an empty spot nowadays, it’s easy to forget what used to be there. I used to drive down 303 from Kent all the time to visit my ex, who lived in Brunswick- I passed that spot about a half-dozen times before it suddenly hit me that the Coliseum used to be there.

I miss that place.

The need for the team to play in a downtown arena, as opposed to one a half-hour outside Cleveland, is certainly understandable. But- and I don’t know, maybe this is just the embellishment of memory- I always thought the Coliseum was a better place to watch a game than the Gund/Q. Better sight-lines (I remember the seating bowl being steeper), and much noisier at the best of times. A beautiful, pristine building, too. Just a great place to watch a sporting event. It’s only drawback was geographical. As an edifice, it was superb.

My favorite memory of the Coliseum was as a seventh-grader, going to see the Cavs take on the Bulls in Game 3 of the first round in 1988. This was the first playoff year, the first winning year for the Price-Harper-Daugherty teams; Larry Nance was acquired from the Suns late in the season, rounding out the lineup and kicking off a hot streak that got the team over .500. Chicago had taken the first two games of the series, and now the teams were in Richfield. I remember the crowd howling every time MJ got the ball. He was brilliant, but the Cavs led the whole way- never blowing it out, but always keeping the Bulls at arms length. Michael scored something like 42 pts, but the Cavs won. I got to see the greatest player of all time at his best, and I got to see a Cleveland victory too. That, among all of the Cavs games, Force games, and concerts, is my favorite memory of the Coliseum.

Anyone have any memories of the Big House on the Prairie that stick out?
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Unread postby consigliere » Sun May 20, 2007 3:35 pm

Biggest sports memories are mostly going out and watchign the old Force teams. Used to love going to the MISL games and watching the Force as a kid....Kai Haaskovy (sp), Benny Dargle, Chris Vaccaro, PJ Johns, Craig Allen, etc.

I remember back when Darth Vader used to run out at the beginning to Star Wars music, and when they had to change to a new mascot because Lucas threatened to sue them. I was at the game when Darth Vader was on the jumbotron and "passed the torch" to a new mascot who looked a lot like Vader but I think he was a silver or gold guy.

Also, saw my first concert there back in 1986 seeing Peter Gabriel's "So" Tour. I was a 7th grader at the time, and it was my first experience where I turned to my dad and kept asking him why that smoke smelled so bad and those people looked funny smoking it. :mrgreen:
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Unread postby Dozen » Sun May 20, 2007 5:38 pm

Uhh soccer??????????? :lol:

Saw The Clash of the Titans tour with Slayer,Testament,Anthrax

Saw Judas Priest and Moterhead with my mom

Saw Iron Maiden, Metallica (master of puppets tour), Rush, and a bunch of Satuday Night Main Events and countless Cavs games....
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Unread postby leadpipe » Sun May 20, 2007 6:06 pm

I'm with dozen on this one. You catch me watching a soccer game, just go ahead and hit me over the head with a shovel.

Also with Dozen in the sense that Cavalier history dicatated that most of my memories were from the concert scene. I remember going driving out to a Scorpions concert there one night,. Walked into the Coliseum at about 6:30 under clear skies and about 40 degrees. Exited about 11:30 and there were like 6 inches of snow on each car. If you've never scene a bunch of drunk, stoned teenagers frantically scraping off every god damned car in the lot to find their wheels, well I can't really explain it. Needless to say it took us a couple hours to find our ride.
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Unread postby jfiling » Sun May 20, 2007 6:16 pm

Wow, let's see. I saw KISS/Slaughter/Little Caesar there, as well as Motley Crue/Warrant (during a freaking blizzard).

And George Michael (don't ask).

Actually, my fondest memory is going there to see the Force when I was in 1st grade. Good times.
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Unread postby Dozen » Sun May 20, 2007 7:34 pm

Lead Pipe wrote:I'm with dozen on this one. You catch me watching a soccer game, just go ahead and hit me over the head with a shovel.

Also with Dozen in the sense that Cavalier history dicatated that most of my memories were from the concert scene. I remember going driving out to a Scorpions concert there one night,. Walked into the Coliseum at about 6:30 under clear skies and about 40 degrees. Exited about 11:30 and there were like 6 inches of snow on each car. If you've never scene a bunch of drunk, stoned teenagers frantically scraping off every god damned car in the lot to find their wheels, well I can't really explain it. Needless to say it took us a couple hours to find our ride.


LOL! I also went to a few Greatful Dead shows as well.............not actually inside(becuase I hated their music) but the parking lot was AWSEOME! (rulz) Soccer when I was growing up was for the pussies who wouldnt play football. I still to this day wont allow a soccerball in my house.
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Unread postby Kuiper » Sun May 20, 2007 8:07 pm

I'm with Consig. I enjoyed watching basketball at the Coliseum, but I have more memories of the Force. I played indoor soccer and all the kids played soccer. The Force were fast paced. I even went to Force soccer camp at University H.S. Virtually no one played football where I grew up, although we all followed the Browns. Pee wee football was dead or dying when I was growing up. Now, my kids also play soccer and the only youth football is flag football. The kids who play it before high school are generally the fat, unathletic kids whose dads make them play something and try to convince themselves that their weight is strength. The athletes play soccer or fall baseball. Football's great weakness is that youth football (tackle) is too expensive and has long ago died out in most parts of the country. Perhaps it's alive in some parts of OH, but it wasn't in the OH suburbs.
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Unread postby consigliere » Sun May 20, 2007 9:36 pm

Dozen wrote:Uhh soccer??????????? :lol:


Hey man, I hate soccer. But, when I was in 4th-5th grade I had yet to develop a hatred for the sport.

My parents divorced when I was 7, and going to Force games in the Fall/Winter and Tribe games in the Spring/Summer were some of the good memories I had with my dad when I stayed with him every other weekend. We always went to a game on my weekend visits....whether it be the Force or Indians.

Anyway, even though I can't stand soccer now, it still doesn't take away from the good times as a kid. I remember one night I got a chance during one of the intermissions to kick a goal against PJ Johns and hit the crossbar. Would have won a free limo service or whatever for my dad.
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Unread postby BruceK » Mon May 21, 2007 8:56 am

The year before the Miracle of Richfield. This was my first game at the Coliseum.

For the first time ever, the Cavs were in contention for the play-offs. Next-to-the-last game, Cavs were hosting the Knicks -- that's the "Clyde" Frazier Knicks, not the cheap imitation we have today.

It was either tied or a one point game -- and in the last seconds Frazier was bringing up the ball for the Knicks. Clemons steals it, passes to Jim Brewer, who dunks it for the game winner. The next morning, we tape the highlights off 3WE of Joe Tait yelling "HE STUFFS IT!". (Later, we would play that tape over and over while playing basketball in the driveway)

All the Cavs then had to do was win the last game, at Kansas City against the Kings, to make the playoffs. Of course, they lost. The miracle had to wait a year.
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Unread postby Dozen » Mon May 21, 2007 9:32 am

Consigliere wrote:
Dozen wrote:Uhh soccer??????????? :lol:


Hey man, I hate soccer. But, when I was in 4th-5th grade I had yet to develop a hatred for the sport.

My parents divorced when I was 7, and going to Force games in the Fall/Winter and Tribe games in the Spring/Summer were some of the good memories I had with my dad when I stayed with him every other weekend. We always went to a game on my weekend visits....whether it be the Force or Indians.

Anyway, even though I can't stand soccer now, it still doesn't take away from the good times as a kid. I remember one night I got a chance during one of the intermissions to kick a goal against PJ Johns and hit the crossbar. Would have won a free limo service or whatever for my dad.


Right on, I wasnt doggin on ya for going, just doggin the sport, dont be so "hyper-sensitive" :lol: (jk)
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Unread postby dragonmeister » Mon May 21, 2007 10:22 am

I knew the ticket manager very well and NEVER paid for a ticket to any event. I would call him and tell him how many tickets I wanted and just picked up the tickets at the window. Was able to sit at half court for all Cavs and Harlem Globetrotter games.

Also was always in the first 2 rows of any concert . . . my favorite being the Hall and Oates concert. Those days are long gone but the memories still linger.

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Unread postby furls » Mon May 21, 2007 12:24 pm

Swerb,

Didn't Ali Khazameni's (sp.?) family live really close to your old house by Royalview?
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Unread postby dmiles » Mon May 21, 2007 12:44 pm

Can't believe you all are forgetting the ice capades...

I had a friend in the Belkin club who never seemed to want his tickets so I used to score great seats. Best ever was 3rd row for Aerosmith in 88 just before my Air Force enlistment. I don't even recall who opened, maybe it was Dokken.

I did not get up to the see the Cavs but maybe 1-2 times per year, as my parents didn't spend a ton of money on that stuff. Unfortunately I missed the glory years of the Cavs while in the military. Man I can remember at 8 years old sneaking the AM radio to bed listening to the playoff run in 76. My mom was like "You are 8 years old, how can you care this much".

We were such diehard Cavs fans, including the women in our family. In '92 while on a belated honeymoon in Niagra Falls, we had to plan our night around a Cavs-Bulls matchup in the conference finals, and Cleveland blew them out in Chicago if memory serves. Spent the evening in some Dive bar. I remember asking if the bartender was going to put on the Cavs game and in his best NY accent he says "Here's da remote, I don't give a fuck what you watch".

Being from far western Mahoning County (bordering Portage) I really missed the shorter commute to the Coliseum Vs. generally 1-1.5 hours getting in and out of downtown.

I recall seeing Pete Maravich go for 44 when I was quite young. Another interesting event was a Cavs-Pistons matchup on a Saturday night, followed by some Boxing match after the game. I want to say it was Hearns, or Hagler (or both) or Sugar Ray, I can't recall who was fighting that night.
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Unread postby The Math God » Mon May 21, 2007 10:29 pm

In sports it would be the Cavs vs Boston Eastern Conference Finals in the late 1970s

In entertainment it would be seeing Queen
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Unread postby BadBecks » Tue May 22, 2007 11:57 pm

I remember the security there was so weak that we'd get there really early before games and walk right in the employee entrance. Keep in mind this was like 4 hours early and it wasn't a suprise to lie down in between aisles to avoid detection. I was 14 or so the last time we got away with that. Good times.
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Unread postby swerb » Fri May 25, 2007 2:10 pm

Furls wrote:Swerb,

Didn't Ali Khazameni's (sp.?) family live really close to your old house by Royalview?

Yes, like 10-15 houses down.

My best memory? The year the Cavs were the #8 seed playing the #1 seed Celtics. Beating them in game three. It wasn't my first Cavs game, but it was my first meaningful one ... and I remember it like it was yesterday. The vantage point we had from the upper deck, what we did after.
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Unread postby jb » Fri May 25, 2007 5:02 pm

Police concert 1983

Springsteen 1984

Judas Priest.... Bowie..... can't even recall who else in my golden age of concert going around then.

I never got tix to a kick ass sporting event. Either too young (MOR was that) or too broke (the Wilkens teams coincided w/ college, grad school & right after).

Saw some kick ass Crusaders game though.... :P :-P :razz:

My fav part about that building was how you could walk around the whole concourse INSIDE the seating bowl so you would miss far less action when you had to, um, move around. Wish The Q were like that.
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Unread postby jb » Fri May 25, 2007 5:06 pm

Consigliere wrote:
Dozen wrote:Uhh soccer??????????? :lol:


Hey man, I hate soccer. But, when I was in 4th-5th grade I had yet to develop a hatred for the sport.

My parents divorced when I was 7, and going to Force games in the Fall/Winter and Tribe games in the Spring/Summer were some of the good memories I had with my dad when I stayed with him every other weekend. We always went to a game on my weekend visits....whether it be the Force or Indians.

Anyway, even though I can't stand soccer now, it still doesn't take away from the good times as a kid. I remember one night I got a chance during one of the intermissions to kick a goal against PJ Johns and hit the crossbar. Would have won a free limo service or whatever for my dad.


Peeps forget The Force was The Shizznit for about 2 - 3 years.


As hard as it is to fathom now, the city was so starved for a winner, and it was the era of the Stepien cavs dying, the early 80's Browns of Sam imploading except in the lame assed striek season of 82, and what should have been a better Tribe team on paper with some damn decent pitching underachieving.

The Froce was literally drawing 20K and doing with the B-more Blast what the cavs are doing now with Detroit.

MISL was the most popular sport in C-twon attendance-wise IIRC. I was nerevr down wit it, but that shit was HUGE in the blink of an eye. When the league struggled, Wolstein folded. Peeps were , um, "crushed".

I crack myself up.
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Unread postby FUDU » Fri May 25, 2007 5:06 pm

Police concert 1983


Sheesh dude, showin age again.

Is that where you met my mom?
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Unread postby jb » Fri May 25, 2007 5:10 pm

FUDU wrote:
Police concert 1983


Sheesh dude, showin age again.

Is that where you met my mom?


I made out with her during "King of Pain".
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Unread postby FUDU » Fri May 25, 2007 5:13 pm

Dad?

I gotta leave before I get emotional.
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Unread postby jb » Fri May 25, 2007 5:14 pm

FUDU wrote:Dad?

I gotta leave before I get emotional.


This is sooooooooooooooo fucked up....

LMAO.
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Unread postby hermanfontenot » Fri May 25, 2007 6:20 pm

JB wrote:
Consigliere wrote:
Dozen wrote:Uhh soccer??????????? :lol:


Hey man, I hate soccer. But, when I was in 4th-5th grade I had yet to develop a hatred for the sport.

My parents divorced when I was 7, and going to Force games in the Fall/Winter and Tribe games in the Spring/Summer were some of the good memories I had with my dad when I stayed with him every other weekend. We always went to a game on my weekend visits....whether it be the Force or Indians.

Anyway, even though I can't stand soccer now, it still doesn't take away from the good times as a kid. I remember one night I got a chance during one of the intermissions to kick a goal against PJ Johns and hit the crossbar. Would have won a free limo service or whatever for my dad.


Peeps forget The Force was The Shizznit for about 2 - 3 years.


As hard as it is to fathom now, the city was so starved for a winner, and it was the era of the Stepien cavs dying, the early 80's Browns of Sam imploading except in the lame assed striek season of 82, and what should have been a better Tribe team on paper with some damn decent pitching underachieving.

The Froce was literally drawing 20K and doing with the B-more Blast what the cavs are doing now with Detroit.

MISL was the most popular sport in C-twon attendance-wise IIRC. I was nerevr down wit it, but that shit was HUGE in the blink of an eye. When the league struggled, Wolstein folded. Peeps were , um, "crushed".

I crack myself up.


For a guy who never got down wit it, you certainly have your facts straight. 8) :cool: 8-)

The Blast were the big rival alright. If they were the Pistons, the Pizza Man, Stan Stamenkovich, was their Rasheed Wallace.

The MISL as a whole was booming back then. The Force, Blast, Kansas City Comets and Wichita Wings were all highly successful draws. IIRC one of the reasons for the Kings moving to Sacto was that they were getting it handed to them by the Comets at the Kemper Arena box office. But I remember the beginning of the end for the Force being the resurgence of the Cavs in '87 and '88.
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Unread postby swerb » Fri May 25, 2007 8:11 pm

JB wrote:
FUDU wrote:
Police concert 1983


Sheesh dude, showin age again.

Is that where you met my mom?


I made out with her during "King of Pain".

LOL
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Unread postby jfiling » Fri May 25, 2007 9:05 pm

The Math God wrote:In sports it would be the Cavs vs Boston Eastern Conference Finals in the late 1970s

In entertainment it would be seeing Queen


You might like this, then, if you haven't seen it. Background first:

I've seen in various places the title of "greatest live performance ever" bestowed on Queen for their killer set at Live Aid. The climax of the set?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zBUJztI884M
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Unread postby jfiling » Fri May 25, 2007 9:22 pm

By the way, my all-time favorite Freddie Mercury moment happens about two minutes into this video. Keep the kids out of the room if you're worried about language.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=faUuwRDRrqA
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