Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Tuesday, July 29, 2021

There’s been much to-do in Maryland lately over Baltimore’s decision to erect a new 18,500-seat arena, and the viability of such project when there’s scant hope of attracting an NHL or NBA franchise to play in it.

“It’s a resume-builder for Baltimore,” said Don Hinchey, vice president of communications for the Bonham Group, a Denver-based sports marketing firm. “Without an arena, you’re left out of the franchise discussion. A state-of-the-art facility is the price of entry.”

Though the relocation market seems tepid at the moment, it’s always fluid, Hinchey added.

Fluid it may be, but as long as the Capitals and Wizards make their homes a few miles down the road in the District of Columbia, there’s simply not enough room for additional major-league teams in the Baltimore-Washington market. Having an empty facility is good bait for existing hoops and pucks teams for leveraging better deals at home, but actually relocating there isn’t particularly workable.

With two exceptions, that is: The Capitals and the Wizards. Yes, the only teams that can credibly make a go at occupying a Baltimore arena are the teams already in the extended neighborhood. And that’s chiefly via merely chair-shuffling within the same metro area. In effect, Baltimore is building a bargaining chip exclusively for DC’s NHL and NBA teams.

Probably not the intent of Baltimore city fathers to create a localized turf war over major-league sports. But that’s the shake-out.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 07/29/2008 10:55:34 PM
Category: SportsBiz
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