Preds fans pivot plans after arena flooding causes ‘huge bummer’

WSMV's Marissa Sulek speaks with a disappointed hockey fan after the Predators game was postponed Friday.
Published: Nov. 25, 2022 at 6:28 PM CST
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - After a water main break flooded parts of Bridgestone Arena Friday and postponed two Nashville Predators games, fans chose to drive home or find new plans.

The Predators announced Friday morning the flooding would postpone its game against the Colorado Avalanche originally scheduled for Friday night. The NHL announced late Friday afternoon the Predators game against the Columbus Blue Jackets scheduled for Saturday night would also be rescheduled due to the flooding.

Spectators watched Friday morning as water spewed out of the arena onto Sixth Avenue. The water main break broke the hearts of hockey fans like Chloe Wright, who drove overnight from Atlanta.

“We’ve definitely been a lot better,” Wright said. “Losing out on that is a huge bummer.”

When she was young, Wright said she and her dad had a goal to visit each NHL arena. After her dad died in 2005, Wright made it her mission.

“One of the ways I want to carry on his legacy is finish that list for him,” she said. “I got Bridgestone Arena and the Maple Leaf Garden; Toronto’s Rogers Rink I think it’s called.”

With two arenas left, a water main break threw a wrench in those plans.

Nashville Predators CEO Sean Henry says water damaged the lower levels affecting locker rooms and event spaces. Predators staff now must take down walls, ceilings and tiles.

“The lowest end, three inches of water, and the highest — three feet of water in some places,” Henry said. “Concourse has a fair amount of water as well.”

Henry said it will be an expensive job, but the goal is to get employees and fans back in the building as soon as possible.

“I have a house full of people we’re going to figure out what to do with them now, but it’s a nice day out, and I’m sure people will find great things to do in Nashville,” Henry said.

While Wright was one of those who hoped to go to the Predators game, she hopes to get reimbursed because she isn’t making the trip from Atlanta any time soon.

“With the Thanksgiving holiday, we finally get some time off work,” she said. “We saved a ton of money to travel out here and make the five-hour drive and, unfortunately, I guess the water main had another plan.”

Metro Water says they don’t know the cause of the break but believe it’s from a sudden catastrophic failure like a crack.

The Music City College Hockey Classic was moved to Ford Ice Arena in Bellevue.

A make-up date for Friday and Saturday’s game will be determined later.