[UPDATE: Or not ... seems like the President won't be in attendance now, and Arenas has likely been traded to Orlando for Rashad Lewis. "Great."]
The Miami Heat make their way down to D.C. from New York to play the Wizards tonight. I imagine the atmosphere will be slightly different from Madison Square Garden, in terms of expressed fan affection for the home team. Surely many will be showing up more so to boo LeBron James, the energy from which, however, could certainly lead to more cheers for the Wizards. Then again, I will be curious to see how many adoring screams there are for LeBron and Dwyane Wade reigning down from the rafters. Seems like there will be plenty in this city of transient sports fans.
Actually, I imagine the scene at the Phone Booth will be crazier than MSG. Ted Leonsis has already warned that “lots of dignitaries and VIPS” will be in the building, and that means President Obama, as evidently the Secret Service has been making security preparations at the Verizon Center this morning. Oh, and with all the trade rumors swirling, it could be Gilbert Arenas’ last game in a Wizards uniform. Right now, according to the Washington Post’s Michael Lee, he’s still expected to suit up for Washington this evening.
To describe the buzz of emotion that will be going on in the Verizon Center as a circus doesn’t really do it justice — it certainly takes all the attention away from Josh Howard’s potential season debut, in the least. But to get a bearing on the incoming team that will actually be playing basketball against the Wizards, I turned to ESPN TrueHoop’s Kevin Arnovitz, who has been embedded covering Miami for ESPN.com’s Heat Index. And away we go…