If you’ve hung out in the Washington Wizards corner of the Internet in recent years, you’ve encountered self-loathing, existential despair, dark humor, crushed optimism, bleak foreboding, second-guessing, close camaraderie to dull the pain and a perpetual search for the next dropping shoe, along with occasional faith that things will probably get better, eventually. Plus jokes.
We all love it, though.
Anyhow, while I’m probably overstating things, Ted Leonsis seems familiar with a few of the general themes. During an appearance on DC101′s “Elliot in the Morning” this week, he was asked whether he got tired of hearing the criticism about the direction of his NBA franchise.
“You know, the signal that’s transmitted is mostly from fans,” he said. “And I have to look at how are fans voting. And right now we’re over 90 percent in renewals, so that would have to say that the fans are excited. We’ve sold well over 2,000 new season tickets since the season ended, so we’ll start next season at 10,000 season tickets, which is a real strong line of accomplishment. And so people are voting with their time, their passion, and their business to us.
“In terms of the blogosphere and the media, I’m just happy that they cover us and that they write for us,” he said. “I do think that there’s odd behavior at times, but you know, I celebrate diversity. I think having lots of opinions is important, and whether I like it or not really doesn’t matter. They can do and say whatever they want. I would be more concerned if they weren’t writing at all.
“And it is good on occasion — I’ve seen a couple of bloggers over the last week or so have a mea culpa moment or a little self-awareness that maybe pounding out those pixels, maybe they were wrong on occasion. But overall I admire the blogosphere and what they’ve helped create for us, and I want us to be in it together. And good for them for having strong opinions.”
So we’re all cool, in other words. And now we can boldly march into the new era of happiness and faith and beautiful pixels, as one.
Leonsis also had strong words of praise for the crowds during Games 3 and 4 of the Chicago series.
“The atmosphere at the Wizards games was electric,” he said. “And it was such an authentic-to-D.C. community. And the chants that were starting, the way everyone uplifted the team was really a sight to see.”