Nine days ago, Wizards announcers Steve Buckhantz and Phil Chenier were all over the Internet for thinking that a last-second Trevor Ariza air-balled three-pointer actually went in against the Detroit Pistons.
One common explanation: the Wizards' decision to move the pairing off the floor and higher up in Section 110 caused the confusion. Buckhantz himself has reiterated that while he's happy to broadcast games from anywhere, he wouldn't have messed up that call if he had been on the floor.
So, why did the Wizards do that? Dan Steinberg did some reporting to figure out just how much revenue was gained by having more courtside seats instead of Buckhantz and Chenier's broadcast table:
The benefits for the Wizards aren't slight. Moving radio and then TV broadcasts off the floor created 16 new "Owner's Club" seats, eight between the scorer's table and each team bench. Those seats sell for $1,500 a game as part of a season-ticket package, and grant access to the remodeled Owner's Club. The team sold the entire allotment this year, bringing in about $1 million.
And there's probably no going back. A team spokesman said the broadcasters would be unlikely to move back to the floor, citing the economic benefits of additional premium seating.
The Wizards are the second NBA team to move both the home and road television broadcasters off the floor, joining the Philadelphia 76ers. Twenty-four of the 30 NBA teams have both on the floor. Several radio broadcasters, including the Wizards', have been moved up around the league to make room for more courtside seats.