Open main menu

The Webster Bank Arena (formerly The Arena at Harbor Yard) is a 10,000-seat multi-purpose arena at 600 Main Street in Bridgeport, Connecticut, built alongside The Ballpark at Harbor Yard. The Arena opened on October 10, 2001 and is managed by Oak View Group.[5] Webster Bank entered into a 10-year $3.5 million agreement with the City of Bridgeport for naming rights of the Arena on January 6, 2011.[6]

Webster Bank Arena
Bridgeport Arena
Webster Bank Arena logo.svg
2011 logo
Bridgeport, Connecticut (8428766274).jpg
Full nameWebster Bank Arena
Former namesArena at Harbor Yard (2001–2011)
Address600 Main Street
LocationBridgeport, Connecticut
Coordinates41°10′24″N 73°11′13″W / 41.17320°N 73.1870°W / 41.17320; -73.1870Coordinates: 41°10′24″N 73°11′13″W / 41.17320°N 73.1870°W / 41.17320; -73.1870
Public transitBridgeport station
OwnerCity of Bridgeport
OperatorOak View Group
CapacityConcerts: 10,000
Basketball: up to 9,000
Ice hockey: 8,412[1]
SurfaceMulti-surface
Construction
Broke groundOctober 19, 1999 (1999-10-19)
OpenedOctober 10, 2001 (2001-10-10)
Construction cost$56,278,684
($79.6 million in 2018 dollars[2])
ArchitectBBB Architects, Ltd.
Kasper Group Inc.
Structural engineerBVH Integrated Services, Inc.[3]
General contractorCR Klewin, Inc.[4]
Tenants
Bridgeport Sound Tigers (AHL) (2001–present)
Fairfield Stags (NCAA) (2001–present)
Sacred Heart Pioneers (NCAA) (2010–present)
Connecticut Huskies (NCAA) (some games) (2013–present)
Website
www.websterbankarena.com

The Arena houses 33 executive suites, 1,300 club seats, 3 hospitality suites and a Sony Jumbotron serving as a scoreboard.[7] The Arena offers luxury boxes to corporate sponsors.[8]

The Arena is home to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers of the American Hockey League. Starting in 2013, the Arena hosted regular season Connecticut Huskies Men's and Women's Basketball games. The UConn Men's Hockey team, a new member of Hockey East, were also scheduled to play five regular season games in Bridgeport during the 2014–15 season.

College sportsEdit

Fairfield Stags basketballEdit

 
Fairfield Stags basketball setup

Webster Bank Arena is home to the Fairfield Stags men's and women's college basketball teams representing Fairfield University.[9] Fairfield is a member of the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) where the Stags annually compete against perennial MAAC powers including the Iona Gaels, the 1995 and 2004 NCAA Tournament Cinderella Manhattan Jaspers, the Niagara Purple Eagles, and the 2008 and 2009 NCAA Tournament Cinderella Siena Saints. The Arena was the site of the men's two postseason appearances in the National Invitation Tournament. During the first round of the 2003 National Invitation Tournament, the Stags, led by the nation's blocked shots leader Deng Gai and Nick Delfico played the Boston College Eagles featuring future NBA players Troy Bell and Craig Smith. And during the second round of the 2011 National Invitation Tournament, the Stags, led by head coach Ed Cooley and Derek Needham played the Kent State Golden Flashes. In recent years, Fairfield has brought several perennial national college basketball powers to the Arena including the Georgetown Hoyas, Providence Friars and St. Joseph's Hawks.

Connecticut 6 ClassicEdit

The Arena at Harbor Yard hosted the inaugural Connecticut 6 Classic, a men's college basketball tripleheader featuring Connecticut's six mid-major teams, on November 13, 2009.[10][11] The Sacred Heart Pioneers defeated the Yale Bulldogs 92–86 in the tip-off game of the night. The Fairfield Stags defeated the Central Connecticut Blue Devils 67–58 in game two, and the night concluded with the Quinnipiac Bobcats defeating the Hartford Hawks 85–74.[12]

MAAC basketball tournamentsEdit

 
2011 MAAC Tournament

The Arena and Fairfield University along with the City of Bridgeport and the Fairfield County Sports Commission have hosted the MAAC Men's and Women's Basketball Championships two times. The MAAC Men's and Women's Basketball Championships features all 20 of the league's teams competing for an automatic berth in the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship and the NCAA Women's Division I Basketball Championship.[13] In 2007, the Niagara Purple Eagles defeated the Siena Saints to win the 2007 MAAC Men's Basketball Championships and the Marist Red Foxes defeated the Iona Gaels to win the 2007 MAAC Women's Basketball Championship. And in 2011, the St. Peter's Peacocks defeated the Iona Gaels to win the 2011 MAAC Men's Basketball Championships and the Marist Red Foxes defeated the Loyola Greyhounds to win the 2011 MAAC Women's Basketball Championship.[13]

NCAA basketball tournamentsEdit

The Arena and Fairfield University along with the City of Bridgeport and the Fairfield County Sports Commission have brought the First and Second Rounds of NCAA Women's Division I Basketball Championship to the Arena three times since 2004.[14] The 2004 Tournament featured the Auburn Tigers, Connecticut Huskies, Penn Quakers and North Carolina State Wolfpack. The Connecticut Huskies defeated the Auburn Tigers to win the 2004 Bridgeport Regional en route to winning the 2004 Tournament and being crowned National Champions. The 2006 Tournament featured the Connecticut Huskies, Duke Blue Devils, Georgia Bulldogs and Michigan State Spartans. The Duke Blue Devils defeated the Connecticut Huskies to win the 2006 Bridgeport Regional before advancing to the Final Four of the 2006 Tournament. And the 2008 Tournament featured the Connecticut Huskies, Cornell Big Red, Minnesota Gophers and Texas Longhorns. The Connecticut Huskies defeated the Texas Longhorns to win the 2008 Bridgeport Regional before advancing to the Final Four of the 2008 Tournament. The Arena was the site of the Bridgeport Subregional during the 2012 Tournament and the Bridgeport Regional for the 2013 Tournament, 2016 Tournament and 2017 Tournament.

NCAA hockey tournamentsEdit

The Arena has joined Fairfield University and Yale University in co-hosting the East Regional of the NCAA Men's Ice Hockey Championship three times. The 2009 NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Tournament featured the Air Force Falcons, Michigan Wolverines, Vermont Catamounts and Yale Bulldogs.[15] The Vermont Catamounts won a dramatic double overtime game against the Air Force Falcons to win the East Regional and advance to the 2009 Frozen Four.[16] The 2011 NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Tournament featured the Air Force Falcons, Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs, Union Dutchmen and Yale Bulldogs.[17] The eventual 2011 National Champion Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs upset the top seeded Yale Bulldogs to win the East Regional and advance to the 2011 Frozen Four.[18] In 2012, the Union Dutchmen defeated UMass Lowell Riverhawks to advance to the Frozen Four. The Arena hosted again in 2014.[19] Most recently, in 2018, the top-seeded Notre Dame Fighting Irish beat the second-seeded Providence Friars to win the East Regional; the Michigan Tech Huskies and Clarkson Golden Knights also participated.

Park City SportsFestEdit

In conjunction with Webster Bank Arena hosting the MAAC and NCAA basketball and hockey tournaments, the Park City SportsFest has become an annual tradition in Downtown Bridgeport. SportsFest is a free, multi-venue fan festival. During SportsFest, the City of Bridgeport closes off a portion of Main Street from its intersection with State Street to the Arena in order to house the events. The SportsFest is organized by the Fairfield County Sports Commission and presented by People's United Bank.[20]

Professional sportsEdit

Bridgeport Sound TigersEdit

Webster Bank Arena is home to the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, a professional ice hockey team in the American Hockey League (AHL) and the AHL affiliate of the New York Islanders of the National Hockey League (NHL). The Sound Tigers joined the AHL in 2001, and the first event at the Arena was a Bridgeport Sound Tigers game on October 10, 2001.[21] The franchise's lease at Webster Bank Arena runs through the 2021 season. During their inaugural season, the Sound Tigers won a division championship and made the Calder Cup Finals where they lost to the Chicago Wolves four games to one. The team has experienced seven winning seasons through the 2009 season.

NHL preseason hockeyEdit

On September 30, 2006, the Arena at Harbor Yard hosted an NHL preseason game between the New Jersey Devils and the New York Islanders. The Islanders defeated the Devils, 3–0. And on October 1, 2011, the Arena at Harbor Yard hosted an NHL preseason game between the 2011 Stanley Cup Champions Boston Bruins and the New York Islanders. The Bruins defeated the Islanders 3–2.[22] On October 3, 2014, the Boston Bruins and the New York Islanders played an NHL preseason game at Webster Bank Arena. On October 1, 2016, the NHL will host another Islanders preseason game, this time against the Washington Capitals. On September 22, 2017 the Islanders will host the Rangers in a preseason game.

Date Teams Attendance
September 30, 2006 New Jersey Devils 0–3 New York Islanders
October 1, 2011 Boston Bruins 3–2 New York Islanders 8,489
October 3, 2014 Boston Bruins 6–1 New York Islanders 8,600
October 1, 2016 Washington Capitals 2–1 New York Islanders
September 22, 2017 New York Rangers 1–2 New York Islanders 8,612
September 22, 2018 New York Rangers 2–5 New York Islanders 7,033
September 28, 2019 New York Rangers 2-4 New York Islanders 6,971

NBA preseason basketballEdit

On October 18, 2003, the Arena at Harbor Yard hosted an NBA preseason game between the New Jersey Nets and the Toronto Raptors.[23] The Nets defeated the Raptors 93-77. On October 15, 2005, the Arena at Harbor Yard also hosted an NBA pre-season game between the New Jersey Nets and the New York Knicks. The Knicks defeated the Nets 93-84 in the contest.

Date Teams Attendance
October 18, 2003 Toronto Raptors 77–93 New Jersey Nets 8,170
October 15, 2005 New York Knicks 93–84 New Jersey Nets 8,825

International basketballEdit

Date Teams Attendance
September 07, 2018 Japan   69–76   Canada 0
September 08, 2018 Canada   68–74   United States 3,258

Special eventsEdit

GymnasticsEdit

On November 12, 2016, the arena hosted the Kellogg's Tour of Gymnastics Champions.[24]

Mixed martial artsEdit

On August 24, 2019, Bellator 225 will be hosted at Webster Bank, with the headliner being Mitrione vs. Kharitonov 2.

President Obama rallyEdit

On October 30, 2010, the President of the United States Barack Obama joined Democratic Party candidates, including former Stamford Mayor and candidate for Governor Dan Malloy, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal and Congressman Jim Himes at a "Moving America Forward Rally" at the Arena at Harbor Yard.[25][26]

Pro WrestlingEdit

On June 1, 2019, NXT TakeOver: XXV took place from Webster Bank Arena.

Disney On IceEdit

On January 9, 2016, Friday’s Disney On Ice performance was cancelled due to mechanical failures and poor ice conditions. This led to disappointment from visitors. Refunds we’re offered for their tickets later.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "AHL Set to Kick-Off 75th Anniversary Season" (Press release). American Hockey League. October 8, 2010. Retrieved October 10, 2010.
  2. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Retrieved January 2, 2019.
  3. ^ "Engineering Firm Portfolio in Destination Resorts Related Projects". BVH Integrated Services, Inc. Retrieved September 28, 2011.
  4. ^ "Special Report: What's On Deck". SportsBusiness Journal. July 30, 2001. Retrieved September 28, 2011.
  5. ^ "OAK VIEW GROUP TO MANAGE WEBSTER BANK ARENA". WebsterBankArena.com. Retrieved 2019-02-25.
  6. ^ Torres, Keila (January 7, 2011). "Webster Bank Purchases Naming Rights for Arena at Harbor Yard". Connecticut Post. Bridgeport. Retrieved January 6, 2011.
  7. ^ Betts, Travis (November 12, 2012). "What's New at Webster Bank Arena". Bridgeport Sound Tigers. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  8. ^ "Premium Seating". Bridgeport Sound Tigers. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  9. ^ "Fairfield Basketball Signs Agreement To Continue Playing At Webster Bank Arena". Fairfield University Department of Athletics. May 17, 2012. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  10. ^ Connecticut's 6 Website
  11. ^ Solomon, Dave (May 28, 2009). "UConn on Back Burner, at Least for One Day". New Haven Register. Retrieved May 28, 2009.
  12. ^ "Six Division One Basketball Programs Featured in the Connecticut Six Tourney". Fairfield University Department of Athletics. February 5, 2010. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  13. ^ a b "Bank of America MAAC Basketball Championships 2007". Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  14. ^ "2008 NCAA Women's Basketball First and Second Rounds Home". Fairfield University Department of Athletics. Archived from the original on May 9, 2008. Retrieved March 31, 2008.
  15. ^ Stags on Ice: Hockey descends on Bridgeport, CT; Fairfield University Co-hosts
  16. ^ McMillan, Ken (March 29, 2009). "East Regional: Upon Further Review, Vermont Advances". Inside College Hockey. Archived from the original on February 16, 2012. Retrieved March 30, 2009.
  17. ^ "NCAA Hockey Regional Host Committee Announced" (Press release). Yale University Department of Athletics. December 4, 2008. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  18. ^ McMillan, Ken (March 27, 2011). "NCAA East Regional: Superior Effort From Duluth". Inside College Hockey. Archived from the original on March 13, 2012. Retrieved March 27, 2011.
  19. ^ Fornabaio, Michael (March 28, 2014). "Freshmen Step Up to Lift Quinnipiac Hockey". Connecticut Post. Bridgeport. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  20. ^ "4th Annual SportsFest in Bridgeport". Fairfield County Sports Commission. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  21. ^ Cuda, Amanda (February 12, 2010). "Arena at Harbor Yard Hits 1,000-Event Milestone". Connecticut Post. Bridgeport. Retrieved February 12, 2010.
  22. ^ Fornabaio, Michael (October 2, 2011). "Haley Fighting Hard to Make Islanders". Connecticut Post. Bridgeport. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  23. ^ "Toronto Raptors at New Jersey Nets". National Basketball Association. October 18, 2003. Retrieved June 10, 2014.
  24. ^ "2016 Kellogg's Tour of Gymnastics Champions takes center stage beginning Sept. 15". usagym.org. Retrieved April 1, 2019.
  25. ^ Dixon, Ken (October 30, 2010). "Obama Rallies Democrats in Bridgeport". Connecticut Post. Bridgeport. Retrieved October 30, 2010.
  26. ^ Bradley, Tahman (October 30, 2010). "President Obama's Connecticut Speech Interrupted". ABC News. Retrieved October 30, 2010.

External linksEdit