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Reports: Staples Center to be renamed Crypto.com Arena in 20-year, $700 million deal

Staples Center is soon to be no more. Get ready for the Lakers to play in Crypto.com Arena, because AEG got the BAG.

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Utah Jazz v Los Angeles Lakers Photo by Juan Ocampo/NBAE via Getty Images

In updates that will make your inner child sad, Staples Center will no longer be called Staples Center by the end of next month. The house that Kobe, Shaq and the Lakers built will instead be renamed the Crypto.com Arena, according to multiple reports:

Just how large of a venue naming rights deal? Well, according to Axios.com, in excess of $700 million for a 20-year deal.

Staples was believed to have a lifetime deal to own the arena naming rights, but Axios reports that AEG — the company that owns Staples Center (the Lakers do not own the building) — bought those rights back to pursue a “fresher name” to put on the building:

What no one knew, however, was that AEG was eager to bring in a fresher name. In early 2019 it quietly bought back the naming rights from Staples, which by that point was owned by private equity firm Sycamore Partners.

Crypto.com this past summer heard that AEG was seeking out a new sponsor, and the two sides began hammering out a deal that involves several experiential and philanthropic components.

Every fan is obviously going to have a strong reaction to this, because all of us hate change. It’s just human nature to have an emotional attachment to a name we have so many positive associations with. We’ve watched the Lakers raise six banners since moving to Staples Center. We’ll always remember it by that name.

But ultimately — as dumb as this new name may sound for now, and yes, it sounds really dumb, and this change is really jarring — these are just corporate entities naming a building. The Staples Center we all know, love and grew up around isn’t going away. It’s just being renamed from a soulless corporation that doesn’t care about our fanhood beyond using it to establish brand recognition for reasonably priced office supplies to a new soulless corporation that doesn’t care about our fanhood beyond using it to establish brand recognition for its cryptocurrency offerings. None of that will never take away the memories we established in it, and we’ll all get used to it in a few years.

So long live Staples Center. And welcome, our new crypto overlords. I guess this is the future. Welcome to The Crypt.

This story will update with more details as it develops.

If you are a PR person, please do not email me about “the latest offerings in crypto” or whatever, I do not care and am just covering this naming rights deal. For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. You can follow Harrison on Twitter at @hmfaigen.