What to Know Before Going to a Trail Blazers Game at the Moda Center

James Thompson

The Trail Blazers have always had a loyal following, but since becoming a mainstay at the playoffs, the basketball team's fanbase seems to be swelling rapidly. Soon, the Moda Center won't even be able to hold all of the Portland Trail Blazers' army.

This Pacific Northwest team has made it to all but two playoffs over the past decade. Every year, they seem to climb another rank on the NBA standings, adding a slew of devotees to their repertoire along the way.

People come from afar to see the Trail Blazers take the court and it's easy to see why. Games at the Moda Center offer a one-of-a-kind atmosphere worth traveling for (if not for the infectious energy, then for the food alone), so make sure you stop by on your next visit to Stumptown.

Buying Tickets

The Blazers' recent run of success has led to a shortage of ticket inventory of late, but not to worry: More seats are often available on the secondary market for those who persevere.

Tickets can be purchased on Ticketmaster, via the phone, or at the Moda Center box office. Distributors like SeatGeek and ‎TicketIQ aggregate all the secondary ticket sites except Stubhub. The price per ticket is adjusted by the team regularly based on inventory, opponent, day of the week, and the Blazers' success at the time.

Aim for low-level seating when purchasing your tickets, and if you’re looking to splurge on some courtside seats, you'll be granted with Club access, parking passes, and a host of other amenities.

Getting There

The Moda Center's central location makes locating it a breeze. All four MAX light rail lines stop nearby and TriMet buses frequent the area as well. It’s a 30-minute walk or short taxi ride from downtown Portland, but if you prefer to drive, you shouldn't have a problem locating a vacant spot considering there are more than 2,500 parking spaces available near the Moda Center. Fans can even purchase parking passes for the garage in advance if they plan to drive.

Pregame & Postgame Fun

Pregaming is an integral part of the fun. The most convenient place to grab an early drink is Dr. Jack’s, which is across from the main entrance. Upright Brewing offers beer tastings to those willing to walk and for the sports bar types, Spirit of 77 is where you'll find free pop-a-shot and darts.

As far as food standouts go, Toro Bravo is a must for empanada lovers and Bunk is a locals-favorite sandwich chain. Fancier fare can be found at the meat-lovers establishment Ox or Life of Pie Pizza, all within a 15-minute walk.

Food & Libations at the Game

As necessary as that obligatory pre-tip-off burger may sound, you might want to hold off for the menu at the Moda Center. Unlike some sports arenas, Portland's is a hub for gourmet snacks.

A recent upgrade to the Moda Center introduced such popular eateries as Sizzle Pie, the city's favorite late-night pizza joint, Killer Burger, Po'Shines Café De La Soul, and Zenner's Sausage Company, which has been a Portland staple since 1927. Plum Tasty has vegan fans covered while Salt & Straw provides a solid dessert option.

Portland is, of course, known for its world-class craft beer, so it's only right that the Moda Center serves some up. 70 percent of the beers poured here are of the craft variety, in fact. Widmer, Pyramid, and 10 Barrel are all featured at various concession areas.

Where to Stay

Travelers are treated to a plethora of hotels in the downtown area. Courtyard, Marriott, Hilton, Westin — they're all within reasonable distances of the Moda Center. The Nines of the Starwood Luxury Collection is where NBA commissioner Adam Silver and some of the visiting teams stay. Alternatively, you can look into renting a nearby apartment via AirBNB, Vrbo, or HomeAway

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