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Capitals arena: city tries to retain team with $500 million

A few months ago, we learned that the Washington Capitals were considering a move to Virginia. In reality, it wouldn’t be a big move considering the club already trains in the area, but it would mean leaving Washington (D.C.) for good.

We knew it was being negotiated behind the scenes, but in the public arena, it was generally at a standstill… until today.

In fact, in the afternoon, we learned that a press conference was being planned for tomorrow morning in Virginia. Representatives of both the Capitals and the Wizards are expected to attend (remember that both teams are owned by the same man, Ted Leonsis), and in fact, an announcement is expected in connection with a new arena in the region.

In other words, we suppose it would confirm the move of both organizations.

So we could assume that the move was cast in concrete overall, but it looks like the city of Washington is trying to strike back.

In fact, District of Columbia Mayor Muriel Bowser has just announced that no less than $500m will be invested over the next three years to “renew and modernize Capital One Arena”.

You guessed it: we’re talking about the home of the Capitals and the Wizards.

The mayor’s announcement also refers to an extension of the lease until 2052 and a total of $800 million invested (including the $500 million in the next three years). It is stressed that this is the “best offer”, and that it is “final”.

In concrete terms, then, this offer is aimed at keeping the Capitals and Wizards in Washington.

Obviously, we don’t know if the mayor’s offer will change things in relation to tomorrow’s press conference. That said, Ted Leonsis’s group bought itself some leverage, and was able to force the mayor to improve her offer to keep both teams in Washington.

Will this entice both teams to stay in Washington? We’ll probably have the answer in the next few hours.

In brief

– This is… disturbing.

– No Habs player has scored more goals than Mike Hoffman this season. Obviously.

– Very interesting.

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