Last night, the Milwaukee Bucks hosted the Boston Celtics at UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena, formerly known as the MECCA—the Milwaukee Exposition, Convention Center and Arena—which the team had called home in the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s.
They played there, and not the Bucks’ current home, the Bradley Center, to commemorate the franchise’s 50th anniversary.
Celtics-Bucks will have that old school flow tonight pic.twitter.com/jXi4ZrfWCe
— Jay King (@ByJayKing) October 26, 2017
But before the game, Kyrie Irving was skeptical of the court, and feared for his well-being.
“I’m all about safety. We’ll see how it is on my knees, see how it is on everyone’s bodies,” Irving told reporters. “I know this is a pretty older court and it looks like it’s freshly painted as well. I’m just going to do my assessment and go from there.”
Except it’s not an older court. It’s a new one that was just painted to replicate the look of the old MECCA. Now that the teams have played—the Celtics beat Milwaukee 96-89—it will be used by the Bucks’ G-League team, the Herd.
When a reporter alerted Irving of this fact, he doubled down on his safety concerns.
“It took me three steps to realize this is not the same NBA court I’m used to playing on,” Irving said. “We’ll see what’s up.”
Kyrie seems to think he’s playing on a court that’s over 30 years old, when in fact it’s a court that’s just been painted as a replica… https://t.co/d7gETB38vS
— Adam McGee (@AdamMcGee11) October 26, 2017
Not only was the court built to the NBA’s specifications, according to MassLive.com, it was provided by Connor Sports—the same company that made the TD Garden floor the Celtics play on.
The Bucks roasted Irving on Twitter for his belief that the court was over 30 years old.
In case you need to tell someone…tonight’s #ReturntotheMECCA court is a brand new floor.
Here’s how we made it: pic.twitter.com/GjtsIDts2A
— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) October 26, 2017
Maybe we should take Kyrie’s word for it though. He is, after all, an expert on what is flat and what isn’t.