Reports started to trickle in just under an hour prior to the scheduled 8:30 p.m. local time tip-off that there was smoke filling the arena. Here’s what the StarTrib’s Jerry Zgoda reported at the time:
Power outage in arena, reports of smoke and fire in arena. I've been told to leave building. We'll see what happens…
— Jerry Zgoda (@JerryZgoda) December 5, 2013
Shortly thereafter, rumors abounded that an escalator fire had caused all of the smoke, with the NBA ultimately confirming that a generator malfunction caused the large amounts of smoke in Mexico City Arena, and the game would be made up at Target Center at a date to be determined.
This game would have been one of the Wolves’ 41 assigned ‘home’ games, but now coach Rick Adelman and his squad will indeed enjoy the same number of true home contests as the rest of the NBA. Don’t forget, this game will likely be made up when the Wolves start to get their depth back with Chase Budinger and Ronny Turiaf. That, combined with the location being back in Minneapolis, is a big win for the Wolves in the big picture and playoff hunt.
Additionally, this means that Minnesota will have five true off days (albeit separated by flights to and from Mexico City) in between a tough loss in Oklahoma City on Sunday night and a home game against the defending champion Miami Heat this coming Saturday evening.
As much as this is a positive outcome basketball-wise for the Wolves, let’s not forget that there were thousands of basketball fans in Mexico City that were sorely disappointed this evening after likely looking forward to NBA action for quite some time. Obviously, the NBA’s goal of trying to expand the game’s popularity south of the border is noble and correct, but taking a home game away from one of it’s clubs probably wasn’t the right way to do it.
Stay tuned for when the postponed game will be played. Here’s hoping it’s in 2014, and the Wolves will take advantage of the break they were given this evening. We’ll see you all back here on Saturday night for what should be a fun tilt against the Heat.