The Philips Arena was conceived because of deterioration of the Omni, and the Thrashers were already slated as an expansion franchise in the NHL when the building was under construction. The Thrashers played all their seasons in Atlanta at Phillips Arena before the team was sold to a group of Winnipeg businessmen. The Thrashers made their only appearance in the playoffs in 2007, and the team lost its final game in its history before it moved back to Winnipeg to become the Jets.
#2: NBA Basketball
The Philips Arena has been home to the Atlanta Hawks since it opened. The Hawks previously played games at the Omni, Georgia Dome and Alexander Memorial Coliseum. The Hawks have made the playoffs several times since the arena opened, and remains one of the best teams in the NBA. The current season is the best opportunity for the arena to host games in the NBA Finals.
#3: College Basketball
Philips Arena does not have a long college basketball history because the Georgia Dome hosts NCAA Basketball Tournaments. Philips holds the Division II and III championship games when Atlanta hosts the Final Four. A particularly exciting game between Metro State College and Drury University ended with Drury stopping Metro State under the basket in the final seconds of the 2013 Division II national title game. Some consider it the best game in the history of the division.
#4: Various Sporting Events
Philips Arena has been home to numerous sporting events brought to the city by the Atlanta Sports Council. The 2004 U.S. Figure Skating Championships, the 2003 NBA All Star Game, and the 2008 NHL All Star Game. Atlanta lost the NHL All Star game due to the player lockout in 2004. The WWE Hall of Fame ceremony was held at the arena in 2011, and UFC has held several fights in the arena over the years. Philips Arena was a welcome addition to the city of Atlanta, and it was an addition that brought the NHL to the city. Atlanta hosts numerous events in the area of Philips Arena, and its view of Centennial Olympic Park makes the arena one of the nicest places in the city to be.