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Verizon Center officially changes naming rights, will be known as Capital One Arena

Monumental Sports Network

Verizon Center officially changes naming rights, will be known as Capital One Arena

The downtown home of the Capitals, Wizards, Mystics, Georgetown men’s basketball and Valor has a new name: Capital One Arena.

On Wednesday morning, Monumental Sports and Entertainment announced that McLean-based Capital One will be replacing Verizon as the new naming rights partner for the building, which opened in 1997.

Although the new name takes effect immediately, the full signage and branding changeover will happen in the coming months.

The arena, which began as MCI Center before being renamed Verizon Center in 2006, is also getting $40 million upgrades to improve the fan experience, according to MSE.

From the release:

As part of its continued commitment to provide the best fan experience in the country, Monumental Sports and Entertainment today also announces a separate, independent $40 million investment in Capital One Arena. Capital One Arena is one of the few privately-owned arenas in the country, and throughout its ownership, MSE has made over $100 million in investments to ensure the arena remains a best-in-class facility. The announcement today of this new investment is a further down payment on that commitment. 


As part of its independent investment announced today, MSE will continue to push the envelope by employing cutting edge technology to benefit our fans. For example, through the Monumental360 program, MSE will use data to build out a full view of our fans, so we can better cater to their individual needs and interests. Our aim is to use what fans tell us about their preferences when they interact with any touch point of a Monumental franchise. Who they follow on social media, channel of purchase and seat location, how they connect to arena WIFI and what they purchase in the arena can help us tailor not just the Capital One Arena experience, but their fan experience outside the building, too. We want to know our fans well - so we can make sure we are providing them with the very best experience.

This summer, MSE also plans to move to a new point of sale system -- which will be a great first step toward faster lines and additional payment options for fans, as well as better analytics and data that will allow MSE to better tailor the arena experience to each fan. The new point of sale system will also enable MSE to offer Capital One cardholders automated discounts on food, beverage, merchandise and more.

This is all part of MSE's continued commitment to ensure that Capital One Arena remains a premiere destination in the country for sports and entertainment. 

For the full release, click here.

In a blog post, Monumental majority owner and CEO Ted Leonsis noted that the naming rights deal with Capital One continues a big year for MSE, which has also agreed to a new TV rights deal and equity partnership with CSN, welcomed NBC Sports Group as an investor in Monumental Sports Network, invested in a top esports team, Team Liquid, added a NBA G League team and kicked off the inaugural seasons for a pair of AFL teams, the Washington Valor and Baltimore Brigade.

"Welcome to Capital One Arena," Leonsis wrote. "That sounds fantastic." 

The arena has been credited with rejuvenating the Chinatown area of downtown Washington by bringing in many new restaurants and retail stores in recent years. In 2016, Billboard Magazine ranked the arena 8th in the nation and 13th in the world among top-grossing venues with a seating capacity of more than 15,000.  

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We have ourselves a goalie rotation in Washington


We have ourselves a goalie rotation in Washington

It’s happened. The Caps no longer seem to have a No. 1 goalie anymore, they have a No. 1 and 1a.

That’s right, we have a goalie rotation in Washington.

“There's no sense riding one,” Barry Trotz said after practice on Monday. “[Braden Holtby] is coming back and looking better every game and [Philipp Grubauer] played pretty well for a long stretch so why not have both of them going?”

Grubauer got the start Sunday in Philadelphia and Holtby is slated to get the start Tuesday against the Dallas Stars. After that we will have to wait and see.


Trotz has no layout for which goalie he wants to start and when in the remaining ten games. He is not thinking about each goalie splitting five games or which one he wants to use more.

Nope. Trotz has just one thing on his mind. It is all about who starts the next game, that’s it.

“I think you just go with a guy that's hot at the time and your team feels comfortable with and go from there,” Trotz said.

So where does this leave the goaltending situation when it comes to the playoffs? A goalie rotation is all well and good in the regular season, but he has to have one starter for the postseason, right?

Not necessarily.


When Trotz was asked if he philosophically believed in having one starter for the playoffs, Trotz initially said he would not answer, but then said, “Why don't you ask Mike Sullivan what he thinks.”

Sullivan, of course, is the head coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins who has led his team to a Stanley Cup in each of the past two seasons despite turning to both goalie Marc-Andre Fleury and Matt Murray in both seasons.

While Pittsburgh’s goalie rotation was largely based on injury, however, it still provides an example of how using both goalies can work in the playoffs and that seems to be the path the Caps are headed on at the moment.

Said Trotz, “You just have to go with your gut who you think is going to get the job done.”

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NHL Power Rankings: The home stretch

USA Today Sports

NHL Power Rankings: The home stretch

We are down to the home stretch. Only 10 games remain in the Capitals' regular season. Those 10 games will ultimately decide if the Caps finish in first place in the Metropolitan Division and who they will play in the first round of the playoffs.

Washington currently sits in first place in the division, two points ahead of the Pittsburgh Penguins and four points ahead of the Philadelphia Flyers. Of those 10 remaining games, only three come against teams currently in playoff position. The most critical of these comes on April 1 when the Caps travel to Pittsburgh in a game that could ultimately decide the division.

The Caps still hold a narrow lead in the standings, but where do they stand in the rankings? See this week's updated NHL Power Rankings here.