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Stanley Cup Finals Mean More Security For ESA

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RALEIGH, N.C. — In a little more than a week, the sporting world will turn its attention to Raleigh for the Stanley Cup Finals. The international event is the biggest in hockey and it is getting a lot of attention from security forces.

Officials with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Secret Service, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, U.S. Customs, Wake County Sheriff's Office and the Raleigh Police Department will all be part of the security force at the Entertainment and Sports Arena for the Stanley Cup finals.

Fans will first notice a differce at the door. Officials will use a wand with a metal detector to search for objects people are carrying.

"It will slow the process down from an entrance standpoint, and we're going to open up the doors two hours early to accommodate this," said David Olsen, general manager of the Entertainment and Sports Arena.

Officials are warning fans to get in line early or they could miss some of the action. More than 40 cameras will help keep on things around the arena.

The National Hockey League is also requiring arena officials to do a bomb sweep of the building.

"We'll have a dog in the building and secure the building at a certain time," Olsen said.

Tight security probably will not spoil Canes fan Damon Stevenson's fun. He will be at all the games.

"I think the safety precautions are a necessary evil, and it's not going to scare me away from doing the tailgating and all the normal rituals we did during the regular season," he said.

Outside the building, the state Highway Patrol will help with traffic control. More Raleigh police than ever before will be on hand. They will be watching out for counterfeit tickets and ticket scalpers.

Arena officials would not divulge how much more security will be on hand for the finals compared to the playoffs.