As great as the Joe Louis Arena is, it does need improvements.
Take the now-obsolete message boards around the top level of the Joe that used to display out-of-town scores and advertising. It’s now covered by a Belle Tire ad. Other outdated boards in the corners of the arena flash graphics, ads and scores.
This is one area of the Joe that is prime for an update, especially after Comerica Park’s digital renovations, including the high-definition scoreboard and digital ribbons around the suite levels.
Then this morning, I saw an image from the new NHL 13 video game, which shows an updated digital ribbon banner around the top of the Joe Louis Arena, replacing all of the small ads around the top. The dot-matrix boards have been removed. The smaller panel advertising, removed. The large corner boards, gone.
The game maker, EA Sports, strives to provide an accurate depiction of the arena, as evidenced by the true-to-life architecture.
But the Red Wings dismissed the new boards as “just an illustration.” Multiple people within the Red Wings and Olympia Entertainment had no official comment on future renovations at the Joe.
Did EA Sports accidentally leak sensitive information, as they’ve done with uniforms and logos in the past? Or is EA Sports simply updating the Red Wings’ arena before the team gets around to it?
This change would seem to be a welcome change at the Joe Louis Arena. The old technology is breaking down, and it makes sense to update all of this stuff at some point. The question though is, will it actually happen?
Gordon Fall has been around the Detroit sports scene for his entire life and even entered the world with a Red Wings hockey stick in hand. With a variety of connections around the Detroit area, Fall will be presenting the unspoken, yet optimistic truth of our city’s sports scene.