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Houston Rockets arena music falls flat at the Toyota Center

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The Rockets have replaced the classics with pop music, and it's not a good development for the arena atmosphere.

USA TODAY Sports

Music at an NBA arena is crucial. Not only does great music entertain fans, it pumps them and players up alike before and during the game. In the Toyota Center, the music has changed a great deal over the past few years, and that change hasn't always been for the better.

In 2009, the year the Rockets took the Lakers to seven games in the playoffs, they tipped off to Crazy Train by Ozzy Osbourne. As the team dropped back on defense, the arena speakers would blast the Jaws theme to intimidate opponents.

Now, a few years later, the classics still sometimes remain, but more and more they have been supplanted by pop songs by fun. or Phillip Phillips. Everybody has their guilty pleasures, but in a basketball arena setting, the pop hits aren't getting anyone's juices flowing.

There's no way to please everybody out there, but keeping the classics around would make me a happy man. If the Rockets ever win and I don't hear "Celebration" by Kool & the Gang in the background, I don't know what I'll do with myself.