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Heat officially axe FTX Arena name, will play in Miami-Dade Arena for now

The expected announcement came two months after FTX declared bankruptcy amid legal troubles.

©Surya Fernandez

It’s official, the Miami HEAT and Miami-Dade County have jointly announced they have effectively terminated their naming partnership deal with FTX and as a result will play in Miami-Dade Arena for the time being.

Effective immediately, Miami-Dade County and the Miami HEAT have agreed that, until such time as there is a new naming rights partner, to refer to the arena as Miami-Dade Arena.

The removal of the facility’s existing signage and the changeover of branding elements will be ongoing in the coming weeks.

Back in early November, mounting legal issues chiefly involving their financial situation quickly led to the bankruptcy of FTX, the once industry-giant crypto exchange firm, and the Miami HEAT were quick to issue a statement seeking to distance themselves from a 19-year, $135 million deal partnership deal signed in March 2021 and indicating they were ready to move on as soon as legally possible.

The reports about FTX and its affiliates are extremely disappointing. Miami-Dade County and the Miami HEAT are immediately taking action to terminate our business relationships with FTX, and we will be working together to find a new naming rights partner for the arena.

We are proud of the impact our Peace & Prosperity Plan - sponsored by County Commissioner Keon Hardemon and funded through the original deal - is already having in preventing violence and creating opportunity for young people across Miami-Dade, and we look forward to identifying a new partner to continue funding these important programs in the years ahead.

Two months later the HEAT were still playing in the FTX Arena with signage in place as they worked on terminating the deal. Initial reports stated it would be temporarily named “The Arena”, and even though “Miami Arena” would have arguably been the perfect classic nod to their roots considering they’re currently celebrating their 35th anniversary, HEAT Nation can agree it’s still way better than “FTX Arena”.

“American Airlines Arena” was okay, the rooftop sign was sort of iconic, but the name was long, unwieldy and awkwardly shared basically the same name as the Dallas Mavericks’ American Airlines Center in Dallas.