Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Wild Want More Money Out Of Us

Like most NHL Clubs, make that most major sports clubs, the Minnesota Wild have introduced “premium pricing” for some of their home games, 12 to be exact.

Premium pricing” is just a way to sugar- coat saying, “We’re going to charge you more,” as much as $20 more. According to sportswriter Michael Russo’s blog, “Single-game ticket prices will range from $24.00 to $98.00 and Premium game ticket prices will range from $29.00 to $118.00 (Facility fee and Ticketmaster charges not included).”

Why all this? The Minnesota Wild organization is already the most profitable in the NHL, and I’m no financial mind, but I know the Wild walk a fine line here.

The Wild play a very high stakes poker game, with their fans’ money. Its easy economics, really. Drive ticket prices up, and therefore less people who are able to afford to go.

I’ll use myself as an example. I’ve been to about 20 Wild games last year, and I sit in $80 club level seats most of the time. (I don’t pay that, my dad gets them through his job.) If I had paid for all those, that’s $1600 just for me. Say, tickets to “premium games” are $820, and 12 games are “premium,” that’s $9,840 for just those twelve games.

As you see in my example, $9,840 is a chunk of change. If the “New NHL” is all about branching out to the “casual fan,” you can’t tell me the majority of “casual” fans can afford that.

Heck, the majority of diehard hockey fans aren’t able to afford to see games at those prices.