The Full 90

Wizards president clarifies stadium-tour comments about '11 schedule

Yesterday, I linked to a

Down the Byline article about comments Wizards president Robb Heineman said during the season-ticket holder stadium tour

. Several ideas were floated, including the not-really news that no games would be played at CommunityAmerica Ballpark in 2011 and the seemingly-strange possibility of neutral-site "home" games.

Heineman took to

Big Soccer to clarify some of those comments


Which is good because if you weren't able to make it to the stadium tours -- like me! -- this whole thing has been sorta confusing. (All the quotes come from Heinman's Big Soccer post.)

He starts with this:

"I had the opportunity to stand with a group of fine gentlemen yesterday and shoot the “breeze,” and answer a few questions on the stadium. Nothing more, nothing less; but it’s obviously generated more questions. So, let me provide some clarification – probably information that’s a bit premature, but what the heck."

So what were the questions raised?

Will the Wizards play at the CAB next year?
We will not be able to play games at CAB next season, because much of the seating and stadium services are leased on an annual basis – i.e., bleachers, portable toilets, etc. As such, the numbers don’t work there. There is potential for us to play at Arrowhead, and we are talking with them, but nothing has been settled.
But what about the "home games" in neutral sites?
Playing “home games” in neutral sites is likely not a good idea. But, the concept of us playing “a” neutral site “home game” in a location in which we can assure a pro-Wizards/pro-Bravo crowd early in the season is something we are willing to entertain – particularly if it is near our AZ preseason training site and we can minimize travel on a west coast swing by playing away-“home”-away over a 3 game stretch without coming back and forth to Kansas City. We have nothing as such scheduled, but we are going to look in to it.
What about accommodations for season-ticket holders in KC?
As of today, all 17 home matches will be played in the new stadium. To the extent that changes, STH accommodations will absolutely be made. If we play a neutral site game out of market, we’ll do our best to put together a package to travel to warm weather, and if you’re not interested, you’ll be accommodated. If we play in Arrowhead, we’ll do our best to put you in a similar seat (which will be harder with the new stadium) or some other accommodation.

This, of course, brings a lot of clarity to the situation. But the simple fact of the matter is that scheduling a professional sports league is a complicated piece of calculus. Whether or not any of this -- or all of this -- plays out or not is yet to be seen. Which is why I'm not going to declare the playoffs next year out of reach just quite yet.