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A Visit to "The Rock" Provides a Writer With Unexpected Pleasures

Dave Hollander writes about sports...about sports stars and those who cover them. This week, he writes about a trip he made to the Prudential Center Wednesday to watch the Nets play the Warriors. He calls it "as nice of a live professional sports experience as I’ve been to in years". The game was fine, he writes, but it was the other parts of the fan experience that made it special.

"The fan was respected,' Hollander writes when talking about the judicious use of extraneous sound, "not treated like Pavlovian Dogs who need bells rung to animate them". He is stunned to note that Billy King "casually interacted with fans who knew who he was but did not molest him with their sportstalk radio theories on life. Billy just sat among us, one of us."

And at the end of it all, he was amazed at a sort of after party for fans. "First I saw Avery Johnson talk to what was obviously some youth league. Despite his incredible expenditure of energy in close win, Johnson gave these kids all he had and they loved it. On the other end of the court another youth organization of some kind took pictures with players from both the Warriors and Nets who came out after their showers." As Hollander writes, The Rock is "not where 'amazing' happened, but better."