The snow in Washington D.C. is expected to start falling around noon. A blizzard warning formally goes into effect at 3 p.m. The region could get two feet or more. The storm “has life and death implications,” Mayor Muriel Bowser said. “People should hunker down, shelter in place and stay off the roads.” The Capitals are, inexplicably, still hosting the Ducks tonight.
[Update, 1:48 p.m.: The NHL has postponed the game. No makeup date has been announced. Our original article continues below.]
The NHL actually bumped up the start of the game, from 7 p.m. to 5 p.m., citing the fact that Metro trains will be shutting down at 11. But not all the fans with tickets are coming from within the city (and many of those that are still have a hike to and from their train station). Plenty of people, if they want to brave this, will be coming in from the suburbs, which could involve driving on dangerous roads that they’ve been specifically warned to stay off of.
The other alternative is to just not go, and that’s not appealing either. We received an email from an angry fan named David, who said the Caps refuse to offer a refund or an exchange for a future game. David writes,
Fans are getting screwed, and must either put themselves in a dangerous situation or lose money on unused tickets. So in my case I am losing out on $500 on four tickets, because I will not risk the 30 mile drive in a massive snowstorm.
The NHL is in a tough spot. The Ducks don’t come out east very often, so this game would be tricky to make up. But playing this evening may screw Anaheim for its next game: they play in Detroit tomorrow night, and I’m not sure how they think they’re going to get out of D.C. in time.
City officials have implored the Caps and the NHL to postpone the game, saying they want residents home and hunkered down two hours before puck drop.
An official from D.C.’s Emergency Management Agency was even more blunt:
Just call off the game.