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Hill: Big events are worth inconveniences to Las Vegas. But is F1?

There is little doubt we have become spoiled living in the greatest city on the planet.

We love all the benefits brought to town by so many amazing events and the access to sports, concerts and every other entertainment option available. Every concert tour stops here. Major headliners have residencies. Every major sports organization is clamoring to get here.

We get to see all of it and reap the benefits of all the money that flows into town.

But we hate even the smallest inconvenience. We really need to be a little more accepting of some of those minor issues in exchange for all the positives.

Events are what our town was built on. They drive jobs and expansion and everything else that allows us to continue to evolve and be great.

All that being said, it’s OK to admit this entire Formula One experiment has been a boondoggle of the highest degree.

Town is dead

The construction was a mess, of course. An absolute nightmare. But that’s the price of doing business.

However, there are some things that are non-negotiable, even in a town where we need to learn to be more accepting of our role as citizens in bringing some of these events to town.

The track issue that caused the lengthy delay on opening night was a problem, but it only became inexcusable when patrons were kicked out before the conclusion of the event.

That can’t happen. We are an elite event town because of how well we can cater to patrons, and that was a terrible look. Hopefully a lesson learned if indeed this is going to be a long-term relationship between Las Vegas and F1.

The real issue, however, is that the town is dead. This is not what was expected. Whether it was the outrageous initial price demands or the fear of how chaotic this weekend was going to be, people have stayed away.

Several industry people I have talked to have expressed opinions ranging from disappointment to outrage at how empty hotels, casinos and restaurants have been the last few days. That’s not even including the shows and other events that had schedules disrupted or canceled.

This is why the event is a problem. All of the inconveniences in the world would not and probably should not prevent us from continuing to bring in events like this, as long as they are financially successful for the town.

But has this been? Time will tell, and that will determine the event’s viability.

Let’s end with a positive, though. Despite all the grumbling and complaining — and believe me, I did it more than anyone — it is incredibly cool to watch cars driving down the same streets we use every day at 200 mph.

It just would have been nice if we could go more than 2 mph on those same streets at some point instead of sitting endlessly in bumper-to-bumper traffic.

Oops, my bad. I wanted to end on a positive note. It’s just tough.

Far from over

Kevin Kruger and the UNLV basketball team did not get off to the kind of start they would have liked.

The loss to Southern was inexcusable, and they know it. This is a roster with very high expectations, and rightfully so. It appeared they may have bought into their own hype, and it cost them severely.

That kind of loss can derail an entire season and provide a reason for the committee to keep the Rebels out of the tournament in March should it get to that point.

But writing the season off would be a huge mistake. Kalib Boone, who missed the opening game, appears to be a true difference-maker inside, and Dedan Thomas Jr. is as good as advertised.

The season is far from over, and this team could end up being pretty good after all.

Contact Adam Hill at ahill@reviewjournal.com. Follow @AdamHillLVRJ on X.

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