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Silicon Valley Heads to Oakland for NBA Finals: Which Tech Giants Will Sit Courtside?

Resale prices have skyrocketed for what could be the last finals games in Oakland.

We hope Drake still has room on his credit card after peeping his $100 million plane three weeks ago, because a pair of VIP tickets to tonight’s Game 3 at Oracle Arena could set him back more than $100,000. Then again, what better way to break in your plane than flying to the Bay to catch the Toronto Raptors taking on the Golden State Warriors?

Someone reportedly paid an NBA Finals (per-seat) record of $101,015 for two tickets to Game 4. Tickets for this game might fetch a larger premium than Game 3 because it’s potentially the last game ever in Oracle Arena. The series is tied at one game apiece. Should the Warriors win their home games Wednesday and Friday, they’d have an opportunity to close the series out on Monday in Toronto.

Next year the Warriors will play at the new, $1.4 billion, privately financed Chase Center in San Francisco. While the new arena in the Mission Bay neighborhood has been cited as a sign of gentrification, it’s hard to fault the team for wanting to move on from the oldest arena in the NBA. Built in 1966, Oracle has been home to Golden State for 47 years, and last received a major renovation in 1997.

The arena’s imminent demise adds a bit of historic intrigue to the Warriors’ bid for a third straight NBA championship (and fourth in five years). As of Tuesday morning there were pairs of VIP courtside seats available from around $20,000 to $92,654 a piece. One ambitious soul was even offering a pair of tickets behind the home team bench for $136,611 a ticket. Suffice to say, the two-day-old record could very well fall before tip-off.

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That sticker price giving you vertigo? You might follow the lead of a Deadspin writer who last year took advantage of Gametime’s app to buy great finals tickets after the game started. He scored a couple tickets in the first row of the lower bowl (Section 15, A1) for $450 apiece just before halftime, taking advantage of fact that the app sells tickets to the game up to an hour after it starts.

Who can afford tickets like that? The type of people who can afford to live in a place where the median housing price is $830,000, i.e., tech millionaires. They don’t light up the camera like Drake does, but they can battle his checkbook to a draw.

These include people like Larry Ellison, who founded the arena’s namesake, Oracle, and allegedly failed to outbid current owners VC investor Joe Lacob and movie mogul Peter Guber for the team in 2010 when it was sold for $450 million. (The franchise now worth an estimated $3.5 billion.) Ellison made the series last year,

It seems Tony Robbins might have  other things on his mind right now, but he’s been a fan for years and is known to get  almost as animated as Drake. If not Robbins, then presumably his buddy, Salesforce CEO Mark Benioff, as well as his friends Chris Rock, E-40 and Snoop Dogg. Rob Lowe is usually there, though that doesn’t mean he’s watching the game.

WhatsApp founder Jan Koum allegedly paid $53,000 for four courtside seats to a Cavalier/Warriors game during the regular season wo years ago. While he hasn’t posted any selfies, Twitter founder Jack Dorsey posted this video from Game 1 in Toronto, so he seems like a fair bet.

Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, Eddy Cue, is a huge fan who swears he would never tell LeBron supporter Rihanna to sit down, which he claimed was aimed at former Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, a few seats away. Twitch.tv and Atrium entrepreneur Justin Kan can also often be seen courtside,

When Ben Horowtiz’s investment firm Andreessen-Horovitz isn’t consulting with Warriors forward Andre Iguodala on venture capital matters, the pair apparently strike up conversations from his courtside seat next to the bench. Greylock Partners’ Josh Elman snapped this shot at the Finals four years ago, and Katie Jacobs Stanton (Twitter, Google) was also in attendance around that time.

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