Staples nails arena award

Venue nabs Pollstar magazine's top kudo

Los Angeles’ Staples Center, whose owners include entertainment entrepreneur Philip Anschutz, has wrested a top arena-of-the-year accolade away from Cablevision’s Madison Square Garden.

The 18-month-old downtown L.A. venue was named top arena in Pollstar magazine’s 12th annual Concert Industry Awards at a gala held Tuesday in Las Vegas. Gotham’s Garden had won the award for the past six years.

Staples president Timothy Leiweke called the award “a fitting tribute to the best arena and arena staff ever assembled.”

Top events presented at the Staples Center since its opening include concerts by Bruce Springsteen, Bette Midler and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young; the 2000 Democratic National Convention; and the 42nd annual Grammy Awards. The venue also is home to L.A.’s professional basketball and ice hockey franchises.

L.A.-based HOB Entertainment also figured in the Pollstar awards, copping laurels in three categories. Its House of Blues on Sunset Strip was selected nightclub of the year; Mike Krebs, of L.A. and Las Vegas House of Blues venues, was deemed top nightclub talent buyer; and was picked best venue Web site.

“This is the ultimate recognition of our company among our industry peers,” CEO Greg Trojan said of the awards.

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