The Verizon Center’s naming rights do not expire until 2018. but that’s not slowing down Monumental Sports and Entertainment from securing naming rights in advance.
According to Dan Steinberg and Isabelle Kurshudyan of The Washington Post, Monumental Sports is negotiating a naming rights deal with Capital One Financial Corporation, a financial services company headquartered in McLean, Virginia. An announcement could come as soon as next week.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with Capital One, it is the fourth largest auto lender and the fifth largest credit card issuer in the United States. It also bought up some smaller banks that you may have heard of relatively recently. In 2008, it acquired Chevy Chase Bank, which was one of the most notable local D.C. regional banks. I remember Chevy Chase Bank being a mainstay at many Giant supermarkets when I was a kid, but I digress. And in 2011, it bought ING Direct, the American subsidiary of ING Groep, N.V., a major financial services company headquartered in Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Though the official name of the arena is yet to be determined, multiple reports claim that Capital One will have its name somewhere in 2018 once Verizon’s naming rights deal expires next year. Rumors of the arena name change surfaced when Domain Name Wire reported earlier this week that Capital One purchased more than 50 domains.
Once everything is done, the naming rights deal wouldn’t be Capital One’s first investment into sports. Capital One sponsored the Citrus Bowl NCAA football game from 2003-2014. In addition, it also sponsored the English Football League (EFL) Cup from 2012-2016 in the United Kingdom, where it also runs operations.
If there’s something about a “Capital One Center” that intrigues me, it’s that the Wizards and Capitals used to play at The Capital Centre in Landover, Maryland before they moved to Chinatown. Naming rights with Capital One will be an unintentional nod to the past once everything is official.