By Barry Janoff
July 12, 2012: No Dwight Howard? No problem.
The on-again, off-again, on-again ad infinitum negotiations between the Brooklyn Nets and Orlando Magic for the services of all-star center Dwight Howard are off again. But that hasn't stopped the team that recently moved across the Hudson River from New Jersey to party in their new digs with their revitalized squad.
And going against all odds, the Nets have chosen Friday the 13th to do it.
The Nets and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz will host a public celebration on Borough Hall Plaza (near Court Street and Remsen Street) to welcome "Brooklyn’s Backcourt" — guards Deron Williams and the recently acquired Joe Johnson — on Friday, July 13 (beginning 1 PM ET).
The festivities are scheduled to include Williams, Johnson, Nets GM Billy King, Nets head coach Avery Johnson, Brooklyn Nets and Barclays Center CEO Brett Yormark, the Brooklynettes dance team and Markowitz.
In addition, the celebration will feature The Experience, the Brooklyn Nets' interactive mobile unit.
"I'm thrilled with the way our team has come together. My congratulations and appreciation go out to general manager Billy King, assistant general manager Bobby Marks and head coach Avery Johnson for their tenacity, nerve and heart throughout this process," Nets principal owner Mikhail Prokhorov said in a statement regarding the frustrating negotiations centered around Howard. "With the re-signing of Deron Williams and the trade for Joe Johnson, we go into our new home led by an all-star backcourt and with every hope of a great season for the Brooklyn Nets. I can't wait until opening night."
The Nets have also unveiled a technology and sponsorship alliance with Sony Electronics, under which Sony Electronics said it would provide "professional HD production technology as the centerpiece of an HD broadcast control room" at Barclays Center, which opens on Sept. 28 with a Jay-Z concert.
The alliance includes what was called "an extensive collaborative marketing effort" among Sony, Barclays Center and the Brooklyn Nets. It will include Sony branding throughout the venue and other media, as well as on-site consumer product demonstrations. In addition, 600 Sony professional and consumer full HD 1080p displays throughout the arena will offer people "a great view of the action from every angle."
The arena’s HD control room will feature Sony HDC-1400R studio cameras, with PMW-320 XDCAM camcorders used as mobile units to capture live and pre-recorded video elements. The control room will also use Sony’s MVS-7000x switcher.
Sony said its equipment would "capture and produce video for playback during events on Barclays Center’s LED screens and HD displays throughout the facility’s luxury suites, concourses and concession areas." The Sony displays can show game and event content or advertising elements, and are networked for digital signage and other content delivery applications.
"We go into our new home led by an all-star backcourt and with every hope of a great season for the Brooklyn Nets. I can't wait until opening night."
“Barclays Center and the Brooklyn Nets are delighted to work with Sony, the leading brand in consumer and professional electronics,” Brett Yormark said in a statement. “Our high quality programming will be processed and displayed on the best equipment in the industry, offering a superior customer experience. Barclays Center will have the most state-of-the-art technology of any sports and entertainment venue in the world.”
Jay-Z, a native of Brooklyn and a minority owner in the Nets, will be playing eight nights at Barclays Center to open the venue.
There are seven founding partners of the Barclays Center: Calvin Klein, Cushman & Wakefield, EmblemHealth, Foxwoods Resort Casino, MetroPCS, Stolichnaya and Ticketmaster. Other major partners include naming rights holder Barclays, adidas (which will also operate the Nets Shop), Anheuser-Busch, Coca-Cola, Haier America, HighPoint Solutions, LIU Brooklyn, New York Marriott at the Brooklyn Bridge, Tyco and Willis.
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