Roberto Clemente ColiseumColiseo Roberto Clemente (or Roberto Clemente Coliseum) is a sporting events and concert arena in San Juan. It was, for many years, Puerto Rico's largest event facility, and it continues being one of the largest.
The Coliseum is named after baseball hall of famer Roberto Clemente, who died in a plane crash off Luis Munoz Marin International Airport in Carolina in 1972, while flying with relief articles to be given to earthquake victims in Nicaragua. Construction of the facility began in 1973, it was finished in 1974, and inaugurated soon after.
The coliseum has been host to a variety of events, including world championship boxing, business expos, circus, concerts and other things. Many Puerto Rican and international performers have been there, including Antonio Aguilar, Menudo, Marco Antonio Solis, Wilkins, Whitesnake, Duran Duran and others. It has been the home of three different BSN professional basketball teams and the BSN has also used it as a neutral site for their most important games, including game 7 of the championship finals, several times.
The Coliseum has also been used by religious leaders for conferences and religious services.
Most of the world championship boxing bouts fought in Puerto Rico during the late 1970s and early 1980s were fought at the Roberto Clemente coliseum, including Roberto Duran's world title defense versus Mexican Leoncio Ortiz, Wilfredo Gomez's knockout win against Carlos Zarate, many of Samuel Serrano's title defenses, and the fight where Muhammad Ali defended his title againt Jean Pierre Coopman, the only time a world Heavyweight championship fight has been held in Puerto Rico. George Foreman had his last fight before announcing his first retirement there, and Julio Cesar Chavez had one of his first important fights there, on the undercard of Edwin Rosario's world Lightweight championship win against Jose Luis Ramirez. Because of all the boxing action going on during that era, many obeservers call the period from the middle 70's to the middle 80's as the golden age of boxing in Puerto Rico.
The Clemente coliseum has also been the place of large political rallies, and Puerto Rico's electoral commision uses it's facilities to count votes after each election.