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Logistics Of Ice And Hardwood

So what should we talk about while we're waiting for the NBA and/or NHL to grace us with their presence?

Just as importantly, what do we write about? Usually when I decide the topic of an article, unless I'm given a specific assignment, I choose something that I would want to read about if I were a visitor to the site.

For this article then, the topic is logistics.

We are talking about having an NBA and NHL team working as co-tenants in one facility. One plays on ice. One plays on wood. Both play on the same space. Since I first heard Chris Hansen's name, I have been fascinated by the following questions.

How do you get two completely different surfaces to inhabit the same floor space when their respective sports take place during the same months of the year? How is a basketball floor put together? How is the hockey ice formed and maintained? How do you go from one to the other?

To answer these questions, I found some cool informational videos. I'll let cameras do what my pen can't.


I actually have some experience with this, as I was once on a temporary work crew that worked on the floor of the Yakima SunDome on the day of a Yakima Sun Kings game.

The process involves putting tiles of wood together in a very specific order in a very specific location on the supporting surface. I wish I could tell you that I personally put those pieces together, but the truth is that my assignment was to scrape gum off the concrete while the Floor Jockeys did the important stuff.

Applying The Paint


I figured the process has to be more complex then the one I envisioned, which involved several fire hoses and turning the temperature in the arena down to 25 degrees. I was right. It is decidedly more complex.

Ice Making 101

Time Lapsy

I Want To Drive The Zamboni

That's no longer just the title of a funny song. Watch these videos and tell me it wouldn't be a fun job.

The narrator in this next one really likes Zambonis. Seriously. She likes them a lot. Wow.


So do you melt the ice before installing the basketball floor? Probably not. Watch these videos to see the process.