The Milwaukee Bucks are going all-in in their return to their old stomping grounds, the MECCA.
The team already showed fans the retro jerseys that harken back to the Bucks' first season as a franchise nearly 50 years ago (1968). On Friday, the team announced that the game -- scheduled for Oct. 26 again the Boston Celtics -- will be played on a replica of the MECCA court, which was designed by pop artist Robert Indiana in 1977.
"Robert Indiana's famously designed floor is a major part of the legacy, not only of the Bucks, but of the city of Milwaukee," Bucks chief marketing officer Dustin Godsey said. "We really had a hard time imagining playing a game in the old arena without the court being there as well, and giving fans one last opportunity to see 'the floor that made Milwaukee famous.'"
The Bucks played at the MECCA from 1968 to 1988.
The Bucks put together the deal by leasing a court, having a company match the paint scheme and then bringing in another company to paint it. The floor has been covertly stored at a local high school but will move into the MECCA, now known as UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena, this weekend.
The court will be used just for that one night, according to the team's agreement with the Artists Rights Society and Morgan Art Foundation, which represent the rights and interests of Robert Indiana. It will then be sanded down and repainted, likely headed for use by the Bucks' G League team, the Wisconsin Herd.
The Bucks worked with the league to make sure the arena was NBA-ready for the game. The Bucks also had to reconfigure season-ticket holder seating because the arena has roughly 8,000 fewer seats than the team's current arena, the BMO Harris Bradley Center.