The Washington Wizards are out to a fast start with an 18-6 record and 13-2 at home. With this record, you’d fans would be flocking to the Verizon Center to support their team. However, on Friday against the Los Angeles Clippers, the attendance was well short of a sellout and that has ESPN’s Michael Wilbon seeing red.
Wilbon called out DC fans during an appearance on Tony Kornheiser’s radio show this week:
“… are the Redskins all that Washington can follow? They can’t follow two things, sports fans here? Because the Wizards are on to something, Tony. And I don’t mean they’re on to something because they’re not 9-20. First of all, even if they had a more mediocre record, they’re really, I think, one of the four or five most appealing teams in the entire league, in terms of the way they play, the chemistry they have on the court, the personalities. They seem to be just the nicest people. And I have now been around them for a couple of weeks over a period of time to just sort of observe, and listen and have discussion, and they are a delight the Wizards are, as opposed to the fright that is the other team.”
And Wilbon wasn’t done. For not selling out the Verizon Center Friday, Wilbon was quite perturbed:
“And so you mean to tell me that on a Friday night, people don’t have enough interest in the Wizards to go see them play a team that has won nine in a row — the Clippers — at the time? I was so angry Friday night when I saw the 4,000 empty seats or whatever it is. … I was just annoyed. The Wizards are really a terrific team. They can win the Eastern Conference. I’m not betting on that. I know they’ve lost to Toronto, they’ve lost to Cleveland. Okay, fine. This is a long season. They’re right in the mix.”
According to the Washington Post’s DC Sports Bog, despite the fast start, attendance for the Wizards through 15 games is down, but ratings for the games on Comcast SportsNet are up, so it has to make one believe that belief in the team is there and the attendance will rise.
Wilbon ended with this:
“It’s just a really cool thing to watch and somebody, dammit, ought to watch it, and not spend 24-7 in anxiety over the dog football team.”
Washington, D.C. sports fans, consider yourselves called out by Mr. Wilbon.