Quick Links

Wizards owner Ted Leonsis issues statement on Supreme Court decision to allow legalized sports betting

USA Today Sports Images

Wizards owner Ted Leonsis issues statement on Supreme Court decision to allow legalized sports betting

The Supreme Court's decision on Monday to pave the way for legalized sports betting is expected to change how we consume sports and Wizards and Capitals majority owner and CEO of Monumental Sports and Entertainment Ted Leonsis has been gearing up for this for quite some time. He has spoken often about the subject and how his own businesses will adapt to a new era in the sports industry.

After the ruling came down, Leonsis issued a statement via his 'Ted's Take' website. The statement began with a breakdown of the interest in sports betting and how making it legal could produce a safer environment for sports fans to place bets. He compared the industry to Wall Street and how similar regulations could be applied to sports gambling.

Leonsis later went into how the ruling could affect the sports fan experience in general.

Many ask if this decision will impact the integrity of sports themselves.  I think it’s just the opposite.  I think that the increased transparency that will accompany more legalized betting around the country will only further protect against potential corruption.  They say sunlight is the best disinfectant, and in this case I believe that is certainly true. 

Of course, there are a huge number of questions about how today’s decision will play out across different states and throughout the different leagues.  I don’t claim to know all of those answers today, but what I do know is that this is a new frontier for professional sports and teams who don’t seize on this opportunity will be left behind.  As millennials and Gen Z continue to embrace the second screen, it’s not hard to imagine in the near future fans on their devices analyzing data, placing bets and communicating with each other in real time during games.  Legalized sports betting will only bring fans closer to the game, ramping up the action in each minute and creating more intensity.  It will bring new revenue into the economy, creating jobs and growing our tax base.  Today’s decision is a great one for sports fans and I am eager to embrace it.

Leonsis went into great detail about how legalized sports betting could change his businesses earlier this year in an interview with ESPN. Leonsis envisions Capital One Arena being an interactive betting landscape for fans watching games and even the potential for the arena to serve as a new-age sportsbook. Hotel rooms inside the arena for bettors have even been discussed.

The future of sports may have shifted dramatically with Monday's ruling. Though it will likely take a few years to happen locally, expect Leonsis, along with the Wizards, Capitals and other Monumental Sports teams, to be at the forefront.

NBC Sports Washington is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Quick Links

John Wall had the worst game of his career against the Cavs

John Wall had the worst game of his career against the Cavs

The problem with John Wall on Saturday night in the Wizards' blowout loss to the Cavs depended somewhat on whom was asked. Either that, or it was all of the above.

Head coach Scott Brooks indicated to reporters in Cleveland that Wall was sick. Bradley Beal referenced personal issues the team would prefer to keep in-house. Wall suggested he was hampered by a nagging left heel injury. 

Wall's explanation certainly passed the eye test. He clearly didn't have his trademark burst up and down the floor. Plus, he has been icing his left foot after recent games.

Add it all up and it was enough to produce the worst stat line of Wall's nine-year NBA career. Never before had he been held without a field goal and not once had he scored just one point in a game.

Wall runs the Wizards' offense, so naturally, his lethargic play set a sleepy tone. The Wizards dragged their feet, got shoved around by Tristan Thompson and went down by as many as 29. A reminder that this was against the Cavs, a 6-20 team with the worst defensive rating in the league.

Wall went on to tell the Washington Post that the pain in his heel is bad enough that he can't yet commit to playing on Monday in the Wizards' next game. 

When Wall is playing through injuries, he will often go out of his way to downplay them. His admission of the heel injury and how much it has hurt him is unusual and indicates the severity.

Wall has been dealing with several minor leg injuries this season. On top of the heel issue, he played through a thigh bruise earlier this year. But it had yet to be this bad and there may be a reason for that.

Wall returned for this game after being away for a few days to deal with a personal matter. Perhaps that time off made it tough for him to get loose or manage the injury like he usually does when under the watch of team doctors. 

That would make sense, given the last time he played, he played well. Wall had 18 points and 15 assists against the Knicks on Monday.

Many factors may have been at play. The result was a hobbled version of Wall, one who couldn't force enough separation to even get his shots off. Wall attempted only five field goals, the second-fewest of his career. Usually, even on his worst shooting nights, Wall can at least put up shots.

The pain and how it affected his game was clearly wearing on Wall. With just under two minutes to go in the first half, he drove into contact in the lane. After missing the layup, and not getting a foul call, he slapped the stanchion under the hoop before slowly turning to head back on defense.

When Wall is at peak powers, he plays with an unrelenting chip on his shoulder, flying to the rim like he's drawn by a magnetic force. He glides down the court, finishing with left-handed dunks and darts to open teammates on the perimeter. 

On Saturday, the swagger wasn't there. He hung his head, trotted timidly up and down the court and watched helplessly as rookie Collin Sexton and others drove past him.

Wall was far removed from his usual self against the Cavs. It would be hard to envision a scenario in which the Wizards could win with how he played.

At this point, it wouldn't be surprising if he missed Monday's game against the Pacers. The Wizards need him at or near 100 percent and he wasn't close enough against the Cavs.


Quick Links

Details emerge regarding the lingering injury which led to John Wall's career-worst night

Details emerge regarding the lingering injury which led to John Wall's career-worst night

On a night that Washington found itself trailing the Cleveland Cavaliers for the majority of the game, details are now surfacing regarding what may have contributed to John Wall's career-low in scoring. 

The five-time All-Star spent significant time postgame nursing a bone spur, he told reporters. 

He said he 'probably shouldn't have played' in a game where a victory would have made it four consecutive for Washington (11-15). 

It certainly didn't help that Wall had Cavs rookie Collin Sexton's never-ending motor running by him all game long. The 19-year-old lit it up in Cleveland for 29 points (13-23 FG), three rebounds and six assists. 

In 26 minutes of work, Wall scored one point and was 0-5 from the floor. Luckily for the 28-year-old, Washington has Sunday off before Monday's matchup with the Pacers in Indiana.