Power Play: Inside The HP Pavilion, Home Of The San Jose Sharks

Inside The Control Room

There are many systems in place that allow the San Jose Sharks' home ice at the HP Pavilion -- also known as the Shark Tank -- to serve as one of Northern California's premiere sports venues. The team has embraced IT and has issued HP notebooks and desktops to its staff. It also is working with Citrix on a desktop virtualization deployment that eventually will allow employees to bring their own devices to work.

CRN had a chance to tour the Sharks' IT facilities and catch a game against the Nashville Predators. Pictured here is the scene inside Comcast Sportsnet's television truck, where support staff were busily preparing cameras and other back-end systems, a ritual they perform 82 times a year during the regular season.

HP Pavilion, a.k.a. The Shark Tank

HP, the San Jose Sharks' official technology partner, has made sure that fans who come to the games are treated to plenty of HP branding. When it's not being used for hockey games, HP Pavilion has been the venue for hundreds of music concerts, and even the occasional tractor pull.

S.J. Sharkie In The House

S.J. Sharkie, the wildly popular mascot of the San Jose Sharks, makes his way through the locker room for pregame festivities.

S.J. has his own Twitter account, @sjsharkie, which currently has close to 6,300 followers. Last month, S.J. was named Most Awesome Mascot at Cartoon Network's annual Hall Of Game Awards in Los Angeles.

Cable TV Support Infrastructure

Uy Ut, the San Jose Sharks' director of information technology (pictured at left), shows off the portion of HP Pavilion's IT infrastructure that supports cable television trucks and coverage for the home and visiting team.

Ut said the equipment includes one older HP Procurve switch that still works so well he doesn't see any reason to replace it. If it ain't broke …

Keeping The Ice Cold

As one would expect, HP Pavilion has an extensive set of systems to keep the arena cool and the ice surface sharp. Of course, these lie outside the scope of IT, but games couldn't be played without these mission-critical cooling systems.

Orderly Chaos

Spaghetti scenes are common in server closets in IT organizations, but the San Jose Sharks' version seems almost orderly in comparison.

Setting Up

Comcast's San Jose Sharks television announcers conduct rink-side sound and video checks before the game with the Nashville Predators.

Say Cheese

Ut poses for a photo in front of the Comcast interview area just outside the arena.

Keeping Things Cool

A massive storage tank full of cooling agent sits in the player parking lot outside HP Pavilion.

Game On

A giant video display captures action on the ice for fans sitting in seats with difficult viewing angles.

More Cooling Systems

Another one of the many systems at HP Pavilion that help to keep the ice surface cold and ready for hockey games.

In The Bowels Of HP Pavilion

A sign shows visitors the way to the San Jose Sharks' locker room.

Video And Audio Control Room

All of the video and audio played during Sharks games at HP Pavilion is controlled in this room. Team staff uses HP TouchSmart PCs to control content shown on the giant video screens and other digital signage in the arena.

The Original Shark

Dean Lombardi, the Sharks' first general manager, who was with the team from 1996 to 2003, adorned his office at HP Pavilion with this giant plastic shark replica. It remains affixed to the wall of his former office.

Online Threats ...Yum

HP Pavilion's Symantec-themed Zamboni waits for its opportunity to resurface the ice during intermission.

Telecom Wires

HP Pavilion's telephone wiring system is also a picture of neat, logical organization.

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