In a $700 million deal, Crypto.com has purchased the naming rights of downtown L.A.’s Staples Center– current home of the Lakers, Clippers, Sparks, and the NHL’s Kings. The name change, “Crypto.com Arena”, is expected to go into effect on Christmas Day, 2021, as the Lakers host the Brooklyn Nets.
Crypto.com is a digital platform where users can buy and sell cryptocurrencies, which many economists and tech industry professionals refer to as “the future of money”.
The 20-year contract is among the richest in naming rights history, but the circulation of big money is nothing new to Los Angeles, especially with Clippers owner Steve Ballmer in town. In September, Ballmer announced his own $500 million, 23-year naming rights deal with Intuit, a finance tech company, whose name will be on the upcoming brand-new Clippers home, which is expected to be complete in 2024. Also, in 2016, the Golden State Warriors signed a 20-year naming rights deal with Chase Bank worth $300 million.
Reactions from Los Angeles natives and sports fans regarding the Staples Center name change has been a mixed bag, ranging from animosity all the way to indifference. “I mean, it was The Forum where they played before that, not even that long ago. Things change,” says Justin Logan, a 41-year-old Ladera Heights native whose parents are 35-year Lakers season ticket holders.
But in other cases, the name change has indeed triggered strong emotions throughout the sports fan world, which was to be expected, as passion has never been an element that sports fans have lacked. But one thing that Staples Center-loving Los Angelenos will always have– are the memories. Farewell, Staples Center. You were good to us!