The buzz to host sporting and entertainment events at certain locations in the United States of America and England have seen significant impact made by athletes and music acts.
This comes from ticketing, branding, merchandising, social media influences and followership, rankings, and even banters for a good measure.
Nigerian music stars like Wizkid, Davido, Tiwa Savage, Burnaboy, and Kizz Daniel to name a few have performed in some of these leading event centres.
Anglo-Nigerian former heavyweight boxing champion, Anthony Joshua has also fought in one these venues.
Find out the top three of such historic homes to sports and showbiz events.
1. 02 Arena
The 02 Arena has been home to top class entertainment and sporting event place since 2007.
The 02 Arena has hosted several heavyweight boxing fights and musical concerts. It is credited as having the second-highest seating capacity of any indoor venue in the United Kingdom behind the Manchester Arena.
Furthermore, to underline its popularity and a huge pull for the music industry, the 02 Arena was the busiest music arena in 2008.
Five Nigerian superstar music acts have hosted shows at this venue. They are: Wizkid, Davido, Tiwa Savage, Teni and Mayorkun.
The arena, as well as the overall O2 complex, is named after its primary sponsor, the telecommunications company O2, a subsidiary of Virgin Media O2.
2. The Madison Square Garden
The Madison Square Garden is based in New York, USA.
The Garden has been home to professional ice hockey and basketball events, as well as boxing, mixed martial arts, musical concerts, ice shows, circuses, professional wrestling and other forms of sports and entertainment.
Originally called Madison Square Garden Center, the Garden opened on February 11, 1968, and is the oldest major sporting facility in the New York metropolitan area.
As of 2016, Madison Square Garden (MSG) is the second-busiest music arena in the world in terms of ticket sales.
Including two major renovations, its total construction cost was approximately $1.1 billion, and it has been ranked as one of the 10 most expensive stadium venues ever built.
Anglo-Nigerian heavyweight boxer, Anthony Joshua has fought at the MSG on June 1, 2019 against Jarrell Miller which he won.
The ‘fight of the century’, Muhammad Ali versus Joe Frazier, was at the Garden. Rocky Marciano versus Joe Lewis was also held at the venue.
3. Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Tottenham Hotspur Stadium is the home of Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur in north London, replacing the club’s previous ground, White Hart Lane.
The stadium is the world’s first to have a dividing and fully retractable pitch, meaning that it is easily able to morph and fit a variety of events.
The stadium has the ability to transform its Premier League football pitch to meet the requirements of other sporting events as well as concerts.
Tottenham splashed out a staggering £1BILLION on their new North London home which currently ranks just 21st despite being the most expensive stadium ever built.
The new capacity makes it the biggest club ground in London, only second in the Premier League behind Manchester United’s Old Trafford (74,994). This capacity does not massively outweigh Arsenal’s Emirates however, which can hold 60,260.
British fighter of Nigerian descent Anthony Oluwafemi Joshua OBE fought at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium back in 2021 while Afrobeat legend, Wizkid is set to host an event at the stadium at the end of the 2022/2023 season.
Izuchukwu Okosi is a Nigerian sports and entertainment journalist with two decades of experience in the media industry having begun his media journey in 2002 as an intern at Mundial Sports International (MSI) and Africa Independent Television (AIT), owners of Daar Communications Plc.
In October 2004, Okosi joined Complete Communications Limited, publishers of Complete Sports newspaper and Complete Football magazine as a reporter and later script writer for the Complete Sports studio.
He worked there for 13 years until October 2017.
Okosi also worked various times as Correspondent, Content creator and Editor at Sports Market International Magazine, Opera News, All Nigeria Soccer Media and Iconic Media Watch.
He also undertook freelance writing gigs for some local and international organizations.
Okosi is a member of the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN), Association of Movie Producers (AMP), Association of Voiceover Artistes of Nigeria (AVOA), Sports Writers Association of Nigeria (SWAN) and Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ).
He has been part of cast in some Nollywood movies and radio dramas including Blood Money 2, Scores To Settle, Dead End 2, Another Campus Tale and Battle Line.
Aside mainstream media and the entertainment industry, he has interests in scouting/unearthing of talents in the sports and creative sectors, exports business and property development.