Scottrade Center (formerly Kiel Center and Savvis Center) is a 19,150 seat arena located in downtown St. Louis, Missouri, opened in 1994. It is nicknamed "The House that Brett Hull Built". It is the home of the NHL's St. Louis Blues ice hockey team.
The Scottrade Center is respected as one of the louder NHL arenas due to several factors including the 9-second foghorn blast after every Blues' goal followed by an organ rendition of "When the Saints Go Marching In".
Besides ice hockey, the arena features a range of arena programming, including professional wrestling, concerts, ice shows, family shows, and other sporting events. It hosts approximately 175 events per year, drawing nearly 2 million guests annually. For the first quarter 2006, Scottrade Center ranked second among arenas in the United States and fourth worldwide in tickets sold. Pollstar, a highly respected industry trade publication, consistently ranks Scottrade Center among the top 10 arenas worldwide in tickets sold to non-team events.
The most people to ever attend an event at the Scottrade Center was 22,612, which happened twice during the 2007 Missouri Valley Conference Tournament, known as Arch Madness.
The arena is frequently selected by the NCAA for championship events, and played host to the NCAA Frozen Four Hockey Championships in April 2007, and will host the NCAA Wrestling Championships in 2008 and 2009 and the NCAA Women’s Final Four Basketball Championships in 2009.
The building is operated by Sports Capital Partners, owner of the St. Louis Blues, under the leadership of its chairman, Dave Checketts. Major capital improvements being made to the arena under its new leadership include a new center scoreboard and LED ribbon board, luxurious new club seats and a point-of-sale system permitting credit and debit cards at concession stands for faster service.
Kiel Center opened in 1994* to replace Kiel Auditorium
, where the college basketball team had played, which was torn down in December 1992. The Blues had played in the St. Louis Arena
prior to moving into Kiel Center in 1994. The building is currently known as Scottrade Center, after naming rights
were sold in September 2006 to Scottrade
(the St. Louis based online investment firm and discount brokerage
). The Kiel name still exists on the adjoining parking structure and the building cornerstone, the closed Opera House on the north side of the property facing Market Street. Signs for the nearby metrolink stop have been changed to read civic center since the building has been renamed three times in its short history.
(The Opera House portion of the building was not razed when the original Auditorium was but has remained closed since 1992, as members of Civic Progress, Inc.
who promised to pay for the renovation of the Opera House have reneged on that promise, while opposing all outside efforts to achieve that renovation independently of themselves.)
Blues management decried its former naming-rights deal with tech company SAVVIS
, as many of the monies paid out were in Savvis shares, then riding high. However, when the tech bubble
burst, the team was left with almost nothing, and ended up losing money on the deal. Scottrade fixed that problem by paying its deal all in cash.
In September 2006, Scottrade founder Rodger O. Riney
announced a landmark partnership with the St. Louis Blues hockey club and arena. The new name of the arena, Scottrade Center
, was revealed in a joint press conference. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but were described as "long-term and significant." Both Scottrade and the Blues said the agreement was "equitable" to both parties. Most of the signage and other promotions were changed to Scottrade Center prior to the first home game of the Blues on October 12, 2006.
(* The first St. Louis Blues game was played in January 1995 due to the 1994–95 season being cut short because of a labor dispute.)
The Scottrade Center is the home of the St. Louis Blues hockey franchise. A number of other events are scheduled in the Scottrade Center through the year, such as concerts, ice shows, circuses, and similar large gatherings.
Former tenants of the Scottrade Center include the Saint Louis University Billikens NCAA Division 1 Men's Basketball, St. Louis Vipers roller hockey team, St. Louis Ambush and St. Louis Steamers indoor soccer teams, the St. Louis Stampede arena football team, and the River City Rage indoor football team.
- Legendary singer Frank Sinatra made his last ever concert stop to St. Louis on October 21, 1994 to perform a sell out concert at Scottrade Center (then Kiel Center). His last words to the crowd were "I will see you again, I promise"
- The arena has hosted multiple World Wrestling Entertainment events. Most notably WWF Badd Blood: In Your House (which included the first ever Hell in a Cell), Survivor Series 1998, No Mercy 2001 and Judgment Day 2007. It also hosted the emotional RAW is Owen on May 24 1999 – a tribute edition of WWE's Monday Night RAW dedicated to the life of former wrestler Owen Hart, who died in an accident 24 hours before at the Over The Edge pay-per-view event in Kansas City, Missouri.
- Pope John Paul II celebrated a youth day service here on his 1999 visit to St. Louis
- Every March since 1995, the Scottrade Center has hosted "Arch Madness", the men's basketball conference tournament for the Missouri Valley Conference.
- Rock band Alice in Chains performed their last concert with vocalist Layne Staley on July 3,1996.
- Hosts the annual "Braggin' Rights" men's college basketball game between the universities of Illinois and Missouri.
- 1997 Conference USA men's basketball tournament
- Hosts the Mid-States Club Hockey Association Challenge Cup and Wickenheiser Cup finals for high school hockey teams in St. Louis
- 1998 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament Midwest Regional
- NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in 2000, 2004, 2005, 2008, and 2009
- Women's Final Four in 2001 and 2009
- Britney Spears brought her sold-out Dream Within a Dream Tour to the then-known-as Savvis Center on June 22, 2002.
- Hosted the Cory Spinks vs. Zab Judah Undisputed Welterweight title fight in 2005.
- Hosted a U2 concert from the U2 Vertigo Tour in 2005.
- Host the 2006 State Farm U.S. Figure Skating Championships in January 2006, which was used as the primary means to select the United States Figure Skating team for the 2006 Winter Olympics.
- Nine Inch Nails stopped by on their With Teeth tour in October 14 2005
- The center Hosts Dare 2 Share, a Christian youth ministry conference, since 2006.
- The Scottrade Center hosted the 2007 Frozen Four college ice hockey tournament on April 5 and April 7, 2007.
- Scottrade Center hosted Billy Joel live in concert, April 25, 2007, and hosted The Police on July 2, 2007.
- Beyoncé Knowles performed July 8, 2007 at the Scottrade Center as part of her sold-out The Beyoncé Experience tour, where an incident occurred with the pyrotechnics resulting in two crowd members been taken to hospital.
- The Center Hosted Dane Cook's Sell-Out Rough Around the Edges Tour November 04, 2007
- R&B Stars Ciara, Lloyd, T-Pain, and many others performed here in the Summer Tour Screamfest '07 in August 2007. 50 Cent made a surprise performance with Ciara.
- A WWE supershow was hosted on August 31, 2008 at the Scottrade center with tapings of RAW which aired on 9/1/08, and Smackdown which aired on 9/5/08.