The Washington Wizards are underperforming so far this season. The players and fans are right to be frustrated with the on-court performance and results. It is important, however, for fans to continue supporting the team regardless of the disappointing on-court product. That is why the Wizards forward Deni Avdija was frustrated after last night’s 120-99 home loss to the New York Knicks.
In his post-game press conference, Avdija said he was “angry” to hear “Let’s go Knicks” chants in the Wizards’ home arena.
This, unfortunately, has long been an issue with the Capital One Arena. Voted as the second-worst NBA arena by the media, and regularly struggling with attendance, the home of the Washington Wizards is not a scary arena to play in for the opposing teams. Fans of the opposing team regularly outnumber the Wizards fans, especially if they are playing against a team with many fans in the DMV area. Last night’s opponents, the New York Knicks, certainly fall into this category.
As the longest-tenured Wizards player, Deni Avdija has even more of a right to be upset. Even when the team was doing better than it is now, the Capital One Arena’s atmosphere left plenty to be desired. As an international player with Euroleague experience, where the home support in arenas is much more passionate, Avdija surely expects better from his home fans.
This is obviously not solely on the fans. The franchise has failed to give them a team to be proud of for a long time. The ownership and the management have consistently failed to instill hope in the fanbase, resulting in indifferent DC natives and transplants alike. It is therefore up to the ownership and new regime to reignite that spark in the community. Otherwise, there will be many more games where we hear “Let’s go [opposing team]” instead of “Let’s go DC.”