The one theme that I continue to hear throughout the epic failure that Washington football has put on in the last few weeks, is that other local teams will be better suited because of it. Most people have missed the Washington Capitals preseason, and the Washington Wizards beginning training camp.
For as much as Jim Zorn’s potential firing, the losing of the locker room, and the potential revolt against Daniel Snyder for his ownership ineptitude, we are missing far more nationally-relevant sports story lines in other local pro franchises.
Remember Gilbert Arenas? Yeah, he’s coming back, and apparently, he’ll be better than ever. More serious, more focused. The injuries that plagued the club last year with DeShawn Stevenson and Brendan Haywood missing time, have healed.
Flip Saunders, on the outside, has emerged as a good fit for the team. The Wizards appear to be headed in the right direction, or at least with enough talent and focus to return to the bottom tier of the Eastern Conference playoff picture.
And then there’s the Washington Capitals. The loss to the hated Pittsburgh Penguins didn’t do much to increase their national profile, but the Caps are the closest thing the DMV has to a winner.
It seems so far off that the Caps were the afterthought of the NHL and the local sports scene, but Alex Ovechkin and the complete Anti-Snyder approach to management from Ted Leonsis has turned this into a bubbling threat to supplant football as the top sport in DC.
And the worse things continue to get for Washington football, the more fans will look to the Verizon Center for the ultimate sports balm. They may be disappointed that Arenas won’t be the clowning jester as he has in years past, but they will be pleased with a dramatically matured Wiz team.
They may not be used to the Caps entering and playing throughout the season at the front of the pack, but they will appreciate when the team plays to expectations for the third consecutive year.
So, if there’s one thing you can give Snyder credit for, it’s for marketing the other sports well in advance of any on-court, on-ice analysis.