When I was at Verizon Center Friday to watch Game 3 against the Chicago Bulls, it felt really good to see the arena packed, the vast majority of them Wizards fans. The crowd was definitely into the game, and louder than I have ever seen it in quite some time. Unfortunately, the Wizards lost a close one, and Nene has been suspended for game after a scuffle with Jimmy Butler.
The Wizards may have been taken aback Friday because of the fans' support during Game 3, and yes, it sucks that they lost that game in a close battle. But they now expect that same support in Game 4. They still have a lead in this series.
So here are some advisories for Sunday's game against the Bulls so your experience traveling to and from the game isn't spoiled by other planned events in D.C. Many are repeats from Friday's advisories, but it doesn't hurt to say them again anyway.
And besides, Nene will say "muito obrigado" to you all after the Wizards take a 3-1 series lead because of your support and being at Verizon Center from start to finish!
1. The Nike Women's Half Marathon D.C. is on from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.
On most Sundays in the late morning, traffic to D.C. should be pretty free flowing. However, if you are driving to D.C. from Northern Virginia, you should expect some detours in and around the National Mall as Nike is hosting a half marathon for women in the morning.
While most of the run will be along the East Potomac Park area and the National Mall west of 14th Street NW, parts of Pennsylvania Avenue will also be blocked off including sections which intersect 7th and 6th Streets NW, which are streets where the Verizon Center is on.
You can view the route by clicking here.
I doubt that most Wizards fans will be driving to Verizon Center at 8 or 9 a.m., but there could still be congestion from the half marathon past 11 a.m., in particular if roads are not re-opened before then. While I don't want to overhype an event that ends two hours before a Wizards game, when it comes to traffic in this area, better to be safe than sorry.
Lastly, if you are a Wizards fan running in the marathon AND are heading to the game afterwards, much props to you and good luck!
2. The Washington Nationals play at 1:35 p.m.
The District's baseball team is playing in the afternoon against the San Diego Padres. So there will likely be a good crowd at Nats Park because it is a weekend game. Also with both the Nats and Wizards games starting at almost the same time, both teams' fans will be traveling to their respective games together.
3. If you are driving to Verizon Center for the game, reserve your parking passes online.
Like we said Friday, Parking Panda (click here for their site) and Park Whiz (click here for their site) are two sites which will let you reserve parking spaces at nearby garages. In most cases, your space will guarantee you a spot at the garage you go to, even if the sign outside says that the place is "full." By reserving a space at a garage, you reserve your spot that should make things a little easier.
4. There will be Metro track work all day Sunday.
The red, orange, yellow, blue and green lines will have track work done all day Sunday, so trains will not come as frequently. For the orange line specifically, the Stadium-Armory and Cheverly stations are closed and there will be bus service for people who need it. Click here on WMATA's site for more information. Therefore, if you are taking Metro to Verizon Center, give yourself extra time, considering that the marathon and the Nationals will increase traffic late Sunday morning.
That's all we have. Enjoy Sunday's game everyone!