October 21, 2015

Free Stuff! 2015-2016 Edition

For the last couple of weeks now, I've been checking the Washington Wizards website for news of the in game giveaways for the upcoming 2015-2016 NBA season pretty much daily. OK, so maybe twice per day on some days. This is an essential milestone for us diehard Wizards fans as we get to the beginning of the new season. There have to be more games to circle other than those featuring top opponents. The promotional calendar fills in some of the gaps.

I can't find the Wizards promotional calendar on their website, nor did I manage to find one of the little fold out paper schedules at Verizon Center during one of our preseason contests (it's probably too early for that). But a Google search today yielded a webpage that gave me some insight into what to expect. It's about time. I imagine eventually, some more details will be added, but for now this is all we have.

So this year, there is some good news and some bad news.

First the bad news: once again, there are only four games on the schedule with giveaways. That's the same as last year, one fewer than two years ago, two fewer than three years ago and overall just pathetic. The NBA is rolling in cash and the Wizards list of corporate sponsors riveted to the outside of Verizon Center has grown over the summer and they can only come up with four games? The Golden State Warriors and Sacramento Kings have more bobblehead giveaway games than the Wizards have giveaway games. Those franchises get it.

Yes, there's an Otto Porter bobblehead this year but no, it ain't free. Check the price, folks. Still hoping for Randy Wittman as the free bobblehead.

Now the good news: there IS a bobblehead giveaway, although right now it's an unspecified person (almost wrote player there but I'm still holding out hope for a Randy Wittman bobblehead) and we have to wait almost the entire year to get it. The graphic above featuring the Otto Porter bobblehead is from the Wizards' Kids' Club page and is not (hopefully since I'll already have one) the freebie. The bobblehead is without question, hands down the primo in-arena giveaway and everyone knows it. I'm glad to see it return to Verizon Center after a one year absence. The Wizards and their sponsors didn't heed my advice despite the fact that I tweeted it three times, but they did put one on the docket.

Here's a look at the schedule in detail. Don't worry about having enough time to read this. It won't take long; there are only four dates, after all. As usual, I provide my exclusive swag-tastic rating for each item.

Schedule Magnet (Essential) and T-Shirt (Unless you actually wear XL shirts, it won't fit)
October 31 vs. New York
Yep, that's right, opening night this year is a double header of giveaways. Not only do you get the can't-go-through-a-Wizards-season-without-it schedule magnet for your fridge or other favorite metal surface, you also get a t-shirt. 

So I'm obviously excited about the magnet, which serves as my touchstone for dates and times of all Wizards contests throughout the year. I couldn't survive the fall, winter and early spring without this thing. I can't wait to put bring this home after killing the Knicks on halloween. 

I guess the t-shirt is nice but honestly, they come in one size (XL) and one size does not fit all here. I'll likely put mine on at the game, bring it home, maybe work out in it once and then have it sit in a drawer until I decided to either take it to Goodwill or throw it away. Make the shirts in more than one size, please.

Team Poster (Pass)
December 6 vs. Dallas
The team poster has been a staple of the Wizards not so imaginative giveaway schedule for the last few years. Yep, it's a nice graphic that looks professionally produced but I'm way beyond the age where I'm tacking free posters on my bedroom wall. I'll walk right past this one.

Snowglobe (Intriguing)
December 23 vs. Memphis
OK, so now you got my attention, Wizards. I have never ever seen a snowglobe giveaway in my life and I could very much like it. The details of the item have yet to be released but hopefully it's not G Wiz inside the dome with the fake snow. This could be cool. I'm very much looking forward to December 23, which is seasonally appropriate for this gift. If it actually ends up being a G Wiz dome, I'm hoping he's not sporting a Santa costume.

This has nothing to do with this post but I found the picture above online and knew I had to include it in this post. Who (other than Jason Baxter, of course) would buy a customized basketball snowglobe where the Jets are beating the Giants 27-21? Do the people who market these products even watch sports at all? On the other hand, any time the Jets are beating the Giants, I'm all over that. Go Jets! 4-1 start this year, baby!

Bobblehead (Essential)
April 10 vs. Charlotte
So it seems the Wizards saved the best for last, although since it's person TBD, I was forced to use the generic bearded white professional in the number 28 jersey graphic instead of something actually resembling the real product. Kudos to the Wizards for hearing the voice of the fan and putting a bobblehead back in the lineup.

I have just two wishes here. First, I'm hoping they are not double dipping on the Kids' Club and giving away two Otto Porter bobbleheads with different signs on their bases (this one is sponsored by Capital One). And second please please please give us a Randy Wittman bobblehead. I've been requesting this one for a couple of years now. Please make my wish come true. My head would explode if this actually happened by the way.

So that's it. That's the whole rundown. Circle the dates on your calendar but don't worry if your pen is almost out of ink, there's not a lot to circle. Can't wait until April 4!

1 comment:

  1. I read on Dan Steinberg that it's a Wall Bobblehead in April.