The building formerly known as Verizon Center and now known as the Capital One Arena had some leaks that delayed or stopped games in recent years. Though leaks can happen in a vacuum, we shouldn’t see three leaks that interfere with games in the last three years. What’s worse is that two of them happened in the last three weeks!
Leak #1: 2014 Wizards vs. Rockets Game
On January 11, 2014, the Wizards and Rockets played a game that was delayed twice due to a roof leak on a rainy day. The first leak delayed play for about 35 minutes in the second quarter. The second delay happened as the second half was about to start. Ultimately, the game went on, but not before Dwight Howard blocked some shots by a young Wizards fan:
Ultimately, a 1/8 inch hole was patched up and we were in the clear.
Leak #2: A Mystics vs. Sun game is postponed
On July 28, 2017, the Mystics were scheduled to play the Sun in their first home game to kick off the post All-Star break. But the jumbotron was lowered and towels were over center court when water was dripping on center court. Like the Wizards game three years earlier, there was a major rain storm that same day.
After a 50 or so minute delay, the game was called off and rescheduled for August 29.
Leak #3: A Mystics vs. Fever game is delayed
Just a couple weeks later, the Mystics hosted the Fever. A major thunderstorm passed through Washington which postponed a D.C. United soccer game and delayed a Nationals baseball game because they play outdoors. The Mystics however play inside.
And this time, water was dropping on different parts of the basketball court and on fans. We did see a dance off that generated some social media buzz, and the Mystics went on to win the game.
But the bottom line is that basketball games can’t be delayed because of rain.
Ted Leonsis pledges to fix and replace the roof
The don of Monumental Sports isn’t blind to things like multiple leaks. He tweeted this out on Sunday after the Mystics’ win:
Congrats to @WashMystics on another home win last night. Game delayed by a leak - we will fix and replace roof. Stay tuned for more details!— Ted Leonsis (@TedLeonsis) August 13, 2017
When there are three roof leaks that interfered with games recently, I think we can all agree that this must be rectified. It’s unacceptable to see games delayed by rain at a venue where the sport is played indoors.
The Wizards’ regular season starts in just 64 days when they host the 76ers on October. The Capitals’ home season opener is even sooner. They will host the Canadiens just 53 days from now on October 7. Even if the roof leaks don’t directly affect play on the court or the rink, no fan buys a ticket at Capital One Arena to see water drop on his or head.
So let’s give credit to Leonsis for committing to fixing the roof as soon as possible. But that being said, it’s important that we all see what the plan is to fix and replace the Capital One Arena roof before more games and events are delayed or called off because of water dripping on the floor.