Rod Beard and Ted Kulfan take a tour of the new Little Caesars Arena. Detroit News
Detroit — After Tuesday’s ribbon-cutting ceremony for the new Little Caesars Arena downtown, there’s been some intrigue about how the Pistons would fit into the picture. The arena began during the construction phase as a hockey arena and when the Pistons got on board, much of the framework had been completed.
Both the Pistons and Red Wings will begin their regular seasons next month at the new arena, which was opened to the media for tours on Wednesday. Though construction crews still are completing many of the final touches, the initial views are impressive.
The two teams will have separate locker rooms and the Red Wings’ is bigger than the previous one at Joe Louis Arena. There are several upgrades and amenities that will help set a new standard as new teams build arenas around both the NBA and NHL.
Although the Pistons’ locker room was not completed and was not part of the tour, the team released some renderings and details about what the new digs will have. The Pistons’ locker room will be about 40 percent larger than the one at The Palace.
The Pistons will utilize a large portion of Little Caesars Arena, spanning more than 10,000 square feet, including a locker room, training center and player lounge.
The locker room includes a space of about 1,250 square feet, making it one of the largest in the NBA. The 18 lockers will have state-of-the-art design, with 12-foot ceilings, and the room will have a 98-inch touch-screen media wall for game-film viewing and breakdown.
The players also will have access to a training facility that has a whole-body cryotherapy system, hot tubs, cold tubs and nutritional area. In addition, a player lounge, with 1,150 square feet of utility space, will have pre-game and post-game meals and theater-style seating for team meetings.
“It will be the best locker room in the NBA and we’re really looking forward to making our home here,” Pistons vice chairman Arn Tellem said.
The Pistons also are building their own practice facility in midtown Detroit, but that won’t be completed for about two more years. In the interim, the Pistons will continue to practice in Auburn Hills but will play their games in downtown Detroit.
Until then, they’ll be in limbo, but when they’re done, it’ll be well worth the wait.
“Between the two, we will have the best facilities for any basketball organization in the NBA — and we’re proud of that,” Tellem said.