Washington Wizards earn NBA’s Team Innovation Award
Wizards Also Recognized with Game Experience Satisfaction Award and Ruby Redcross (posthumously) Awarded the Pete Winemiller Guest Experience Innovation Award
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Basketball Association (NBA) announced today that the Washington Wizards were the recipient of the Team Innovation Award and Game Experience Satisfaction Award, two marque recognitions of the 2022 NBA Sales & Marketing Awards. Additionally, Ms. Ruby Redcross, Security Ambassador, was posthumously awarded the “Pete Winemiller Guest Experience Innovation Award.”
Recipients of the Team Innovation Award demonstrate excellence in creating and executing unique ideas that have generated a positive impact on their business. Recipients of the Game Experience Satisfaction Award are the top teams with the highest percentage in overall game experience satisfaction as determined by the Fan Loyalty Tracker (FLT). The NBA created an honor in 2017, the “Pete Winemiller Guest Experience Innovation Award,” and this year, they honored one person from each of the league’s franchises who innovates to create a world class service experience for fans. Ms. Ruby, as she was known, passed away in August 2020.
“We are honored that the NBA took special note of the tremendous work we put into this season to make the experience of fans coming to Wizards games the most dynamic and entertaining possible,” said Jim Van Stone, President, Business Operations & Chief Commercial Officer, Monumental Sports & Entertainment. “With the tremendous partnership of Caesars Entertainment to open the first in-arena sportsbook, we have extended the game day experience so that guests have a great destination to arrive ahead of Wizards games and can enjoy terrific hospitality after the game. And during the games, our award-winning Game Experience Team – our departments of marketing, game presentation, guest relations, ticketing, suites, and so many others – work in concert with one another to ensure fans enjoy exceptional service throughout Capital One Arena. We are so proud of this incredible Wizards family – and the recognition of Ms. Ruby Redcross, who set the high standard for care and service followed by our entire organization today.”
The Wizards were recognized for opening the first sportsbook positioned within a sports arena in the U.S. In addition to the betting operation, the space also houses a 200+ capacity, extraordinary culinary experience, with a menu designed by a Michelin star chef. Caesars by William Hill Sportsbook at Capital One Arena has grown to become the single most successful business in downtown D.C. Since its opening, the sportsbook has managed $238.8M in handle, with an average bet of $95. It has also contributed over $3.0M+ in tax revenue to the District of Columbia.
“As fans returned to full-capacity, in-person events, we knew they were excited and eager to have a safe, high-quality evening with their family and friends and we strived to make each of the 41 home games incredibly special,” continued, Van Stone. “The Game Experience Team was relentless in their creativity and energy, and it showed in every major effort and tiny detail of this season. We are overjoyed that their hard work was duly recognized by the League.”