The Mystics will host the Lynx on Thursday, June 7 at Capital One Arena. However, game time has been moved up to 4 p.m. EST instead of 7 p.m. EST to accommodate Capitals fans who wish to see Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals against the Vegas Golden Knights. Puck drop is at 8 p.m. EST. But in practice, it probably won’t happen until closer to 8:30 p.m. EST given pre game concerts, super-extended intros, and the like.
WNBA teams are regularly evicted from their home arenas due to NHL and NBA teams’ events. But the Capitals are playing the Golden Knights in Las Vegas on June 7. However, Monumental Sports decided that a watch party is appropriate inside the arena. The event inside the arena is free.
Watch parties should be encouraged. They really should! But the bottom line is that the Mystics had a game scheduled that day and the Capitals aren’t playing at Capital One Arena during that time.
This is not right!
All this does is hurt any homecourt advantage the Mystics would have against the Lynx, who are still the WNBA’s defending champs. Also people can’t simply get out of work early to watch a 4 p.m. game. Traffic is horrible in and out of Washington during these times.
It’s one thing to kick the Mystics out of Capital One Arena because the Capitals (or the Wizards if they were in the NBA Finals) have a game that day and time. I get it. An NHL game or NBA game will generate more revenue than a WNBA game could. But it isn’t right to kick the Mystics out for a FREE Capitals event. There are plenty of restaurants near Capital One Arena and there are plenty of alternative ways Monumental Sports could have had watch parties, even around Capital One Arena.
Most Capitals fans probably won’t think much about this rescheduling. That’s because the Capitals are in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals. Perhaps the Caps are leading 3-1 next Thursday and have a chance to end the series that day. I’m rooting for them like the rest of the city. But moving a Mystics game time to an hour when they won’t be able to play in front of a more friendly audience when they can actually get to the arena is unfair to the Mystics. I get economics to some extent. But this is ridiculous.