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Miami Heat rename arena to ‘The Arena’ following FTX collapse

Miami Heat rename arena to ‘The Arena’ following FTX collapse

The Miami Heat have renamed their home arena to ‘The Arena’ after failed cryptocurrency company FTX filed for bankruptcy in November, ending an intended 19-year sponsorship with the team.

A year ago, crypto company FTX was valued at $32bn but filed for bankruptcy protection on 11 November and it has been reported that over $8bn of customer’s funds are missing.

In March 2021, FTX acquired the naming rights to the arena for $135 million and the deal was approved by the NBA shortly after, before being officially renamed the FTX Arena in June.

The naming rights deal was fully terminated on Wednesday and the Heat will now play their home games at ‘The Arena’ until a new sponsorship can be found.

From 1999-2021, the arena was known as the American Airlines Arena where the Miami Heat won three NBA championships in 2006, 2012 and 2013 as Dwayne Wade, LeBron James and Chris Bosh dominated the scene.

A bankruptcy judge has ruled in favor of Miami-Dade County removing FTX branding from the Heat’s arena.

The county was just 18 months into a 19-year, $135 million deal with FTX before the crypto company’s fraud and bankruptcy scandals.

— Front Office Sports (@FOS) January 11, 2023

Miami Heat to play home games at ‘The Arena’ in 2023

The Miami Heat are enduring an up-and-down season in Florida, sitting with a 22-20 record and 8th place in the Eastern Conference despite being one game away from the NBA Finals in May.

Miami have three players averaging at least 20 points per game in Jimmy Butler (22.1), Bam Adebayo (21.4) and Tyler Herro (21.2) but have struggled to find a rhythm under Erik Spoelstra so far.

The departure of PJ Tucker to the Philadelphia 76ers has hurt the Heat’s bench scoring, whilst Max Strus has not been able to offer the same impact as he has done in previous years alongside veteran Kyle Lowry.

According to NBA betting sites, Miami have the 14th-best odds to win the NBA championship at +40000 with BetOnline whilst Adebayo is a leading candidate to win Defensive Player of the Year.

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