MSE FOUNDATION KICKS OFF HOLIDAY SEASON
WITH WALMART SHOPPING EVENT
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation kicked off the holiday season with a shopping spree at Walmart for its annual Family-to-Family initiative on Nov. 21. This holiday season the wives and girlfriends of Washington Capitals, Mystics and Wizards players and coaches will assist in shopping, wrapping and delivering gifts to underserved families in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area.
Mandy Alzner, wife of Capitals defenseman Karl Alzner, Brandi Holtby, wife of Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby, Monika Hybnerova, girlfriend of Capitals goaltender Michal Neuvirth, Gina Nucci, girlfriend of Capitals defenseman John Carlson, Courtney Parrie, fiancée of Capitals defenseman Mike Green, and Claire Volpatti, wife of Capitals forward Aaron Volpatti, shopped for 20 families at the Walmart Supercenter located in Tyson’s Corner on Nov 21.
Combined the participants spent nearly $20,000 on gifts for local families. Children will receive clothing, educational items and toys, while parents and guardians will receive clothing and household items along with giftcards.
“It’s a great opportunity,” said Parrie. “It’s so special. It’s a great time of the year with the holidays and being able to give back to the community is a wonderful opportunity.”
The trip marked the third year the Capitals, Mystics and Wizards have joined forces to participate in the Monumental Sports & Entertainment Family-to-Family program.
Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation supports the charitable efforts of the professional teams under its umbrella: the Washington Capitals, Mystics and Wizards. MSE Foundation is committed to the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area and focuses on the following five pillars to maximize its impact on the community: education and scholarship, hunger and homelessness, military and veterans’ affairs, pediatric health and fitness and youth basketball and hockey. In 2013 MSE Foundation, along with the Leonsis Foundation, will donate more than $1.5 million to local charities. More than $1 million has been donated to date.
Caps Casino Night is always a fun event. Fans get dressed up and mingle with tux-wearing players while having a great time and giving to charity. If you’ve never been and are thinking about going, here are my photos from Caps Casino Night 2012 and 2011. Tickets go on sale today so get them quickly because they will sell out.
Capitals Casino Night Tickets Available Dec. 3
Presale for March 12, 2014 Casino Night begins at 10 a.m. Tuesday
ARLINGTON, Va. – Capitals Casino Night tickets will be available beginning at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 3, for past attendees and Friday, Dec. 6 for season ticket holders. The presale will last until 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 10, when tickets go on sale to the public.
Capitals Casino Night will take place on Wednesday, March 12, 2014, at the Sheraton Pentagon City Hotel. The event features gaming with the players, a raffle, a silent auction and a live auction.
Games include blackjack, Texas hold’em, roulette, craps and slots. There also will be video game stations and auctions featuring Capitals game-used jerseys, sticks and skates as well as autographed items from other professional athletes. A live auction will offer fans the chance to win unique, once-in-a-lifetime experiences with players and coaches. In addition fans can also win autographed memorabilia, hotel stays and gift certificates through the raffle.
The Cavalier Ballroom with Wii gaming stations, the raffle and silent auction will open at 6:30 p.m. The Commonwealth Ballroom with casino games and live entertainment will open at 7 p.m. with the event concluding at 10:30 p.m.
Tickets are limited. Attendees must be at least 21 to attend Casino Night, and dress is cocktail attire. To purchase tickets visit WashingtonCaps.com.
Once tickets are purchased they will be available for pick-up at the MSE Foundation table located behind section 104 on the main concourse during home games starting March 2. Tickets will not be mailed. If attendees can not pick up tickets at a home game during March, tickets will be placed in will call and available for pick-up the night of the event.
All funds raised from the 2014 Capitals Casino Night will benefit MSE Foundation. MSE Foundation is the nonprofit arm of the Washington Capitals that offers unique resources and programs to various charities and nonprofit organizations through the Washington, D.C., area on behalf of the Washington Capitals. Each ticket, less benefit received of $100, is tax deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.
Washington Capitals Alumni Alan May and Ken Sabourin Host Hockey School
at St. Mary’s School in Landover Hills, Md.
ARLINGTON, Va. – Washington Capitals alumni Alan May and Ken Sabourin visited St. Mary’s School in Landover Hills, Md., on Oct. 23, to host a Capitals Hockey School assembly.
Hockey School is a free program, designed to be both instructional and interactive, with the goal of exposing students to floor hockey while teaching proper technique.
May and Sabourin directed a floor hockey session in the school’s gymnasium with approximately 150 elementary school children.
During the assembly May and Sabourin guided the students through several drills focusing on stickhandling, passing and shooting prior to inviting them to demonstrate what they learned.
Students, who have been practicing hockey as part of their physical education curriculum, participated in a brief scrimmage joined by May and Sabourin as their teammates. With May representing the girls team and Sabourin representing the boys, the game ended in a tie.
“I thought it was a great turnout with the whole school here,” said Sabourin. “The kids brought a lot of energy. They were enthusiastic and really appreciated that we came by.”
Following the clinic, the Capitals donated a set of street hockey equipment to St. Mary’s School in Landover Hills. The Capitals also provided each student with a hockey 101 booklet, a squishy puck and an autograph from May and Sabourin.
The assembly was the first Capitals Hockey School of the 2013-14 academic year. The Capitals host one Hockey School visit each month between October and May and donate street hockey equipment to each participating school.
The 2013-14 season marks the seventh consecutive year the Capitals have conducted their Hockey School program. The Capitals have hosted more than 70 clinics and reached more than 10,000 students in the past five years.
Capitals Press Release:
ARLINGTON, Va. – Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin has been named the NHL’s “First Star” for the week ending Oct. 6, the NHL announced today.
Ovechkin led the NHL in goals (4), points (6), power-play goals (3), power-play points (5) and shots on goal (24) just days after returning from Greece, where he became the first Russian to carry the Olympic torch for the 2014 Sochi Winter Games. He opened the season by recording two points (one goal, one assist) in a 6-4 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks on Oct. 1. Ovechkin then scored twice, assisted on the game-tying goal and potted the clinching score in the shootout to help the Capitals rally from a three-goal deficit in a 5-4 victory over the Calgary Flames on Oct. 3. He closed the week by tallying Washington’s lone goal, the 375th of his career, in a 2-1 loss to the Dallas Stars on Oct. 5.
The 28-year-old Moscow native and reigning Hart Memorial Trophy winner has played in 604 career NHL games, all with the Capitals, totaling 741 points (375 goals, 366 assists).
In a press release Thursday afternoon, the Washington Capitals announced they claimed Swedish defenseman Alexander Urbom off waivers from the New Jersey Devils. Forward Michael Latta was subsequently assigned to Hershey to clear cap space for Urbom. The Capitals now have 8 defensemen on their roster. Perhaps Connor Carrick will be the next to move to Hershey in the coming days.
Latta moving to Hershey means Jay Beagle will likely dress for Thursday’s game against the Calgary Flames.
On the Urbom pickup:
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals have claimed defenseman Alexander Urbom off waivers from New Jersey, vice president and general manager George McPhee announced today.
Urbom, 22, recorded eight assists and 64 penalty minutes in 68 games with the Albany Devils of the America Hockey League (AHL) last season. The native of Stockholm, Sweden, has played in 14 career NHL games and collected two goals and nine penalty minutes.
Urbom registered 12 points (two goals, 10 assists), 33 penalty minutes in 50 games during the 2011-12 season and also represented the Devils in the 2012 AHL All-Star Classic. In 190 career AHL games, Urbom collected 43 points (four goals, 39 assists) and 161 penalty minutes.
The 6’4”, 215-pound defenseman was drafted by New Jersey in the third round (73rd overall) in the 2009 NHL Draft.
And on the Latta reassignment:
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals have assigned center Michael Latta to the Hershey Bears of the American Hockey League (AHL), vice president and general manager George McPhee announced today.
Latta, 22, made his NHL debut against the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday at United Center. The Kitchener, Ontario, native split last season between Milwaukee (AHL) and Hershey, registering 38 points (10 goals, 28 assists) and 198 penalty minutes in 76 games. The 6’0”, 212-pound center also skated in five playoff games for the Bears last season, collecting three points (two goals, one assist) in five games. Latta has registered 66 points (24 goals, 42 assists) and 300 penalty minutes in 131 career AHL regular-season games.
Latta, along with Martin Erat, was acquired by Washington from Nashville in exchange for Filip Forsberg on April 3, 2013. Latta was originally drafted by Nashville in the third round, 72nd overall, in the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.
Washington Capitals and Wizards Players Team Up with KaBOOM! to Build New Playground
at Eagle Academy Public Charter School in Washington, D.C.
ARLINGTON, Va. – Washington Capitals forwards Jay Beagle, Aaron Volpatti and Tom Wilson and Washington Wizards guards Bradley Beal and Glen Rice, Jr. joined more than 250 volunteers from Eagle Academy Public Charter School and Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation, organizers from KaBOOM! and residents of the Congress Heights neighborhood on Thursday, Sept. 26, to build a new playground at the Eagle Center at McGogney.
The new playground’s design is based on drawings created by children who participated in a Design Day event in July. Since the school reopened, students have been playing indoors or on a field with no play structure. The new equipment will provide more than 1,200 children in the neighborhood with a safe place to play.
Volunteers including the Capitals and Wizards players completed the build in six hours, including moving 160 cubic yards of mulch, mixing more than 1,500 pounds of concrete and assembling the play structure.
“The new playground offers kids a great place to be active,” said Beagle. “It was nice to see so many people come together for a cause, and we hope the children enjoy playing outside on the equipment.”
“I am glad to see all of the ideas from the kids from Design Day come to life,” said Beal. “The participation of the volunteers and the excitement of the students made it a great day.”
The playground is the first built by KaBOOM! and Monumental Sports & Entertainment Foundation, but the third built with the assistance of the Washington Capitals. MSE Foundation served as the funding partner for the playground, which cost $83,500.
P-NATS RHP TAYLOR HILL NAMED A 2013 MINOR LEAGUE
RAWLINGS GOLD GLOVE AWARD® WINNER
Potomac Nationals RHP Taylor Hill Named
One of Nine Recipients of MiLB’s Highest Defensive Honor
Woodbridge, VA—Minor League BaseballTM and Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc., today jointly announced that 2013 Potomac Nationals RHP Taylor Hill has been selected as a recipient of a Minor League Baseball 2013 Rawlings Gold Glove Award® for stellar defense at his position this season.
Hill, 24, joins a roster of nine MiLB players set to receive a 2013 Rawlings Gold Glove Award after honorees were selected among qualifying players from the 10 domestic, full-season Minor Leagues.
These defensive wizards will receive their trophies modeled after the iconic awards given to Major League Baseball’s top defensive players during the 2014 season.
Hill becomes the second-ever Washington Nationals farmhand to secure a Rawlings Gold Glove Award after 2B Steve Lombardozzi was bestowed the honor following the 2011 campaign.
Hill owned a 1.000 fielding percentage across Class-A Advanced Potomac, Double-A Harrisburg, and Triple-A Syracuse in 2013 over the course of 28 appearances and 164.2 innings. Hill did not commit a single error in 46 total chances while recording 31 assists and making 15 putouts.
The control maven logged a combined overall record of (9-9) to complement a 2.95 earned run average while walking just 29 batters all season as a member of the Nationals, Senators, and Chiefs.
“Since 1957, Rawlings has celebrated defensive excellence at the highest levels of professional baseball,” said Mike Thompson, senior vice president of marketing for St. Louis-based Rawlings.
“Every organization should be proud to have a Minor League Baseball Rawlings Gold Glove Award winner in their system.”
“I know what an honor it is for a player to receive a Rawlings Gold Glove Award, having been involved in presenting them to the winners the last two years,” said Pat O’Conner, President & CEO of Minor League Baseball.
“The players really appreciate and understand how prestigious the accolade is and I want to thank Rawlings Sporting Goods for their continued support of Minor League Baseball.”
The 2013 Minor League Baseball recipients of the Rawlings Gold Glove Award are as follows:
Position Name Club(s)/Major League Baseball Organization
P Taylor Hill Potomac, Harrisburg, Syracuse/Washington
C Blake Forsythe Binghamton/New York Mets
1B Jordan Lennerton Toledo/Detroit
2B Carlos Alonso Clearwater/Philadelphia
SS Nick Ahmed Mobile/Arizona
3B Wade Gaynor Erie/Detroit
LF Jason Krizan Lakeland/Detroit
CF Dalton Pompey Lansing/Toronto
RF Randal Grichuk Arkansas/Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
The return of Rawlings recognizing Minor League Baseball players for their defensive prowess began in 2011. The St. Louis-based company named a Minor League all-star fielding team for several years in the 1960s. The honor was known then as the Rawlings Silver Glove Award.
Five players who were honored in 2012, RHP Adam Warren (New York Yankees), C Josh Phegley (Chicago White Sox), LF Derrick Robinson (Cincinnati Reds), CF Engel Beltre (Texas Rangers), and RF Marcell Ozuna (Miami Marlins) have graduated to the Major Leagues. A foursome of Big Leaguers, 1B Efren Navarro (Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim), 3B Brandon Laird (Houston Astros), CF Jordan Danks (Chicago White Sox) and RF Cole Gillespie (Chicago Cubs) were among those honored in 2011.
Though confirmed reports leaked all week, the Washington Capitals announced Saturday morning at their annual Capitals Convention that the team was chosen to host the 2015 Winter Classic. What was not announced was a specific location or opponent.
Nationals Park remains the most likely destination for the outdoor game, though one wonders why there would be so much “cloak and dagger” surrounding the venue, considering Nationals principal owner Ted Lerner sits on the board of Monumental Entertainment.
One venue that is not under consideration is FedEx Field, which is reserved that day to host a college football bowl game.
Other venues that have been mentioned as possibilities are football stadiums Byrd Field at University of Maryland and M&T Bank Stadium, home of the Baltimore Ravens, and baseball-only stadium Oriole Park at Camden Yards.
A popular, but logistically nightmarish venue possibility was the National Mall. But in a blog post tow years ago, Caps owner Ted Leonsis dismissed the idea, saying that the effort and expense in building a one-time use only ice arena, stadium, locker rooms and security on “America’s Front Lawn” would be completely unpractical.
Speculation on opponent is wildly varied as well. Some folks favor a traditional opponent or division rival. Others would like to see a west coast team or a Canadian team as a variation. Strong money, though, is on a team from one of the big east coast traditional hockey markets, such as Boston or Philly.
From the press release:
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals will host the 2015 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic on Jan. 1, 2015, the National Hockey League and the Washington Capitals announced today. The game will take place on Jan. 1, 2015 with the Capitals’ opponent and location of the game to be announced at a later date.
“The excitement of the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic continues to grow, and bringing the 2015 event to the D.C. area will write another chapter in the game’s great history of entertainment,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said, “We are looking forward to being in Washington with the Capitals’ great fans.”
The 2015 game will mark the seventh Winter Classic, an annual game that Forbes magazine called the best new sporting event of the last decade. It will mark the second time in history the Capitals will play an outdoor game. Washington defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-1 in front of 68,111 fans at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh on Jan. 1, 2011.
“We are extremely excited to host the 2015 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic and bring this great event to the D.C. area,” Leonsis said. “Our great fan base deserves to experience the magnificence of an outdoor game. We are thrilled to once again be part of this great event.”
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Washington Mystics guard Ivory Latta received Eastern Conference player of the week honors for the third time this season for her performance against the Indiana Fever, Connecticut Sun and New York Liberty.
In the Mystics’ 69-67 win over the Fever, Latta scored 15 points and dished out four assists. The victory helped Washington secure a playoff berth. She followed with a 19-point, five-assist outing against the Sun and closed out the regular season against the Liberty by scoring 12 points and recording two assists.
The Mystics (17-17) will open the 2013 postseason against the Atlanta Dream (17-17) on Thursday, Sept. 19, in Atlanta at 8:00 p.m. in a game that will be broadcast on ESPN2.
The Mystics will host the Dream on Saturday, Sept. 21, at Verizon Center. Tipoff is at 7:00 pm. Tickets for the Washington Mystics First Round playoff games start at $12 and are currently on sale on www.ticketmaster.com or by calling 1-877-DC-HOOP-1.
NATIONALS VICE PRESIDENT/GENERAL MANAGER, JOSH OLERUD HONORED BY CAROLINA LEAGUE AS 2013 CALVIN FALWELL EXECUTIVE OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER
Olerud, in Third Season with Potomac Nationals Franchise, Led Club to
an All-Time, Single-Season Attendance Record in 2013
Woodbridge, VA—The Potomac Nationals are proud to announce Vice President/General Manager, Josh Olerud has been named the recipient of the 2013 Calvin Falwell Executive of the Year Award. Voting was conducted by league general managers, club owners, field managers, and the Carolina League president.
“This is a tremendous honor,” said Olerud. “With all the great people we have in the Carolina League, it is very humbling to be recognized. This is a team effort and it is truly the dedication of our ownership group, great front office staff, and first-class game-day team that makes this recognition possible.”
Olerud finished his 10th season in professional baseball in 2013 after eight years as General Manager of the Rockford RiverHawks of the Frontier League and following completion of his third season leading the Potomac Nationals. Originally hailing from Bloomington, MN, he graduated with a degree in Sports Management with an emphasis in Marketing at Minnesota State University at Mankato. Olerud was the most recent recipient of the Pitch and Hit Club of Chicago’s Minor League Executive of the Year in 2012.
Olerud oversaw a 2013 Potomac Nationals campaign that shattered the single-season franchise record for overall attendance at Pfitzner Stadium (236,772). This was the highest attendance mark in a single Nationals’ season since 220,145 fans flocked to The Pfitz in 1998. (Prince William Cannons-St. Louis Cardinals). Olerud presided over eight sellouts at The Pfitz during the 2013 campaign and average per game attendance was 3,534 fans. In addition, the P-Nats’ patriarch led a 2013 front office team that unveiled a record number of fireworks shows, premium giveaways, and celebrity appearances which made up a truly landmark 36th season in franchise history which culminated with a Mills Cup Championship Series berth.
On Olerud’s commendation, Potomac Nationals Chairman and CEO, Art Silber said, “We are delighted that the Carolina League has chosen our Vice President and General Manger, Josh Olerud as the Carolina League Executive of the Year to recognize the extraordinary job he has done for the Potomac Nationals. This past season was a record setting year for our ball club, with high marks set in attendance, game revenue, and sponsorship revenue. Josh’s interaction with fans, sponsors, players, and staff has afforded the club the opportunity to reach new heights. I congratulate him and know that this is only the beginning of what is to come for the Potomac Nationals franchise.”
Amidst a blockbuster 2013 season which featured a record tally of sponsorship revenue, Olerud also remained focused on the mission of keeping the Potomac Nationals connected with their local community in Northern Virginia. The Potomac Nationals raised over $100,000 in 2013 across all of their fundraising branches using the following conduits: the P-Nats’ annual hot stove banquet and sports memorabilia auction to benefit S.P.A.R.K. (Supporting Partnerships and Resources for Kids) of Prince William County, Uncle Slam’s Reading Program, a trio of community nights, featured non-profit organization nights, a slew of commemorative jersey auctions with proceeds dedicated to Make-A-Wish Mid-Atlantic, Autism Speaks, and nearby Osbourn Park High School. Also featured as part of this community initiative was the annual Nationals golf tournament in conjunction with SYA Baseball, a pair of Military Appreciation Nights in partnership with Homes for Heroes, Hope For The Warriors, and the USO; the Guns vs. Hoses annual charity softball classic, and a milestone “Hire-A-Vet” program to usher in the hiring of military veterans interested in a career within the Minor League Baseball landscape.
Under the direction of Olerud, the Potomac Nationals also ran a silent sports auction at The Pfitz to directly to victims of the tornadoes that hit the state of Oklahoma back in May thanks to a partnership with the OK Strong Disaster Relief Fund.
“Josh is great choice for this award,” said Carolina League President, John Hopkins. “During his time at Potomac, the operation has been growing and improving in every respect. It’s a well deserved honor.”
During the 2013 season, which featured a franchise record 84 wins and the best winning percentage in club history (.604), Olerud laid out the P-Nats’ red carpet for a slew of Major League rehabilitation stars from the Washington Nationals including, LHP Ross Detwiler, RHP Christian Garcia, LF Bryce Harper, RHP Ross Ohlendorf, C Wilson Ramos, RF Jayson Werth, and 3B Ryan Zimmerman to Pfitzner Stadium. Notably, Harper’s first contest as a Potomac National on June 25th garnered a capacity crowd of 8,495 fans.
As a compliment to the promotional efforts of Olerud and his team to energize the P-Nats’ fan base and proliferate the mission of hosting the most fan-friendly atmosphere possible, the Potomac club used this potent home field advantage on the field to turn in the best 2013 home record in the Carolina League at (47-23).
The Carolina League’s Calvin Falwell Executive of the Year Award was named in 2006 for the man who had been president of the Lynchburg club since that city joined the league in 1966. Falwell served the league as an officer, director, and representative to Minor League Baseball’s Board of Trustees. Falwell passed away at age 90 on August 20th, 2011.