Pelicans-Pacers game postponed due to leaky roof at Smoothie King Center

Wednesday’s game between the Indiana Pacers and New Orleans Pelicans has been postponed due to a persistent leak in the roof at Smoothie King Center in rainy New Orleans.



“Well, we opened the building around 6 p.m. [Central Time] tonight, and the roof was fine, there wasn’t any intrusion coming in at all,” Smoothie King Center general manager Allan Freeman told Jeremiah Johnson of FOX Sports Indiana, noting that it wasn’t until after both teams had come out onto the court, done their pre-game shootarounds, and headed back to their locker rooms that the problem began to surface. “My best guess is we started noticing a small leak around 6:20, maybe 6:30.

Workers mop the court during a delay for the start of an NBA basketball game against the Indiana Pacers in New Orleans, Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018. (AP)

“The thing with roof leaks is, you really don’t know where the intrusion is coming from,” Freeman said. “You know where it’s falling, but the leak itself could be 100 feet from where the water’s actually falling. So, we’re not actually going to try to repair the leak tonight, but we’re trying to create a catch basin, if you will, to catch where the water’s coming in so we can play the basketball game.”

That process didn’t happen as quickly as Freeman or anybody else involved in the event would’ve liked …


… although the Pelicans remained determined to make the best out of a soggy situation.




As 9 p.m. ET neared, the catch basin was in place, with arena staff and the teams planning to wait a few minutes to find out if it’s performing satisfactorily to keep the water off the court, thus protecting the players from having to try to run, plant and cut on a slippery surface.


As 9 p.m. ET came and went, though, that hadn’t happened yet:


More than a half-hour later, everybody involved was still waiting on word:


It finally came down at 9:44 p.m. ET, more than an hour and a half after the scheduled tip time:


It remains to be seen when the game will be made up. The rain date could loom large for both teams. Indiana is 30-25, in sixth place in the East, just 1 1/2 games out of third place and only two games out of ninth in the congested conference. New Orleans, too, is in a nip-and-tuck fight for a return to the postseason, sitting in eighth place in the West at 28-25, two games back of fifth-seeded Oklahoma City but just a half-game up on the ninth-seeded Los Angeles Clippers.

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Dan Devine is a writer and editor for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at devine@oath.com or follow him on Twitter!