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New Wizards owner Ted Leonsis wants to cut down on all the in-game shenanigans

Jun 12, 2010, 10:42 AM EDT

“EVE-RY-BOD-Y-CLAP-YO-HANDS!” (suburbanites disjointedly attempting to clap like Steve Martin in “The Jerk.”)

If new Wizards owner Ted Leonsis has his way, the Wizards won’t be filling Wizards’ fans ears with the constant pleads for chants and booming music throughout the game.

Leonsis told the AP that he wants to “get rid of the chants and stuff and put more emphasis on the game
itself.” It’s a move that will likely be met with approval from not only Wizards fans but coaches and players. No one seems to know where the over-the-top NBA experience came from, filled with chants for “D-Fense!” and other pleas came from, but that atmosphere has pervaded very arena in the league.

But we’ve seen this postseason in places like Milwaukee and Oklahoma City that fans don’t need that kind of prodding in order to maintain a loud atmosphere. ‘They can provide the kind of intensity that those chants are supposed to, on their own. And that’s the kind of fan experience Leonsis wants to bring to the Wizards.

Doing so will make the NBA a more enjoyable game for sports fans. The question is if it will be too unbearable in places with low attendance like Memphis when there’s no sound to fill the void of sneakers and players yelling out instructions, or expletives, depending on the situation. Either way, doing so will make Leonsis a hero with the league’s truest fans.

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