Friday, October 19, 2007

Attendance woes?

Who's up and who's down so far at the gate? I've got a quick look at Globe on Hockey, and it's not pretty for a handful of NHL teams.

The good: St. Louis and the Islanders
The bad: Detroit, Columbus, Nashville, Phoenix, Colorado and Atlanta


At 5:22 p.m., October 19, 2007, Anonymous Frank said...

Good to see StLouis coming back strong. Its a good hockey city - provided there is responsible ownership and a half decent team.

At 5:52 p.m., October 19, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

COL's in the World Series. They'll be fine once that's over with.

At 5:58 p.m., October 19, 2007, Anonymous Keith said...

As a comment, ESPN is a very bad site for measuring capacity of an arena. They still have Calgary at 17,136 and Edmonton at 17,099, when the correct capacities are 19,289 and 16,839 respectively. Both teams are at 100% of capacity, not 112 and 98.9

At 6:09 p.m., October 19, 2007, Blogger mike w said...

Phoenix last night was ridiculous. The announced crowd of 10,448 looked more like 2,448.

Thing is, when I think of the hypothetical of growing up in a market like Phoenix, I don't see how I would ever become a hardcore Coyotes fan in the first place.

At 8:41 p.m., October 19, 2007, Blogger J. Michael Neal said...

The SE Michigan economy is effectively dead. The Wings are going to have to drop prices to keep people in the building.

At 9:05 p.m., October 19, 2007, Blogger Nick said...

I wonder how many tickets detroit sells in other buildings. As a michigan transplant, I know I've seen them more on the road than I have in Detroit the past few years.

Even when I was in Detroit we used to take a trip once a year to see them in a different city

At 9:06 p.m., October 19, 2007, Blogger Sig said...

The NHL has a scripted response for over half of their teams being below last year's attendance... "It's still football season." I am getting close to the end with this sport. I GAVE AWAY opening night tickets to the Washington Capitals... who the hecht wants to see the Canes play? Simply put, this league is S-O-F-T. I laugh when I hear coaches say they are "team tough." The NHL has lost a huge population of fans that loved tough hockey. What we have now is pathetic. But why stop now? Let's expand.

At 9:07 p.m., October 19, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

With the foreclosure rate in the Detroit area, even lower prices might not be enough. An awful lot of fans can't afford to go, but still watch on tv and follow the team in the news.

At 9:39 p.m., October 19, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Wings have always been the 4th team in a four team market.
Here's what's hurt them. Beyond the economy, the Tigers improved and drew the highest attendance in their history this past year. The LIONS ARE DETROIT. 50 plus years of futility or not, they ARE the team in Detroit.
The fans are complacent and don't want to come until the playoffs.
It's the same with the Pistons.
Look at the other three original six US markets. Where does the NHL rank there? Dead last out of the conventional sports?
So don't dump on Detroit unnecessarily.
You can take a family of four to a ball game three or four times for the price it takes to go to one Wings game.

At 9:45 p.m., October 19, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How dare you accuse the Rangers of being 4th! They are more like 6th because of the two baseball and football teams.

At 11:04 p.m., October 19, 2007, Blogger J. Michael Neal said...

How dare you accuse the Rangers of being 4th! They are more like 6th because of the two baseball and football teams.

He said in the city. Teams in Jersey don't count.

At 11:13 p.m., October 19, 2007, Blogger John M said...

For Columbus it’s football season really is a good excuse. This town lives for OSU football, and with the Buckeyes rated #1 again people are following the games. Plus you have the Indians making it far in the post season play so you have people watching that. Walk up sales of tickets will improve if the team keeps playing well and we get some non-weekday games (three home games so far, opening night almost sell out and 2 Wednesday games, one vs. Phoenix)

At 3:49 a.m., October 20, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't know, maybe I'm just a cock-eyed optimist, but when you add Mirtle's pluses and minuses the NHL is still netting out higher than last year. I just watched Toews score a highlight goal for the Hawks and with a new(?) owner in Chicago I think attendance is going to look like St Louis by next year. But by all means keep bad mouthing the league, it just keeps failing up.

At 5:41 a.m., October 20, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Comparing the avg. attendance now vs. the entire season for last year is worthless. The U.S. markets historically pick up steam in December, so things will be skewed.

Last year the avg. league attendance on a monthly basis was something like:

Oct - 16.5K
Nov - 16.5K
Dec - 16.9K
Jan-Apr - 17K+
Oct-Apr - 16.9K

According to ESPN, the average attendance for this year's Oct. games is currently 17.1K. I expect that to drop down to close to last years avg. by the end of the month.

At 8:27 a.m., October 20, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Wings have not always been 4th. That's just a ridiculous statement. The Pistons only overtook the Wings in local ratings and following during the lockout-- imagine that, a team winning a championship while the NHL shut down to save Phoenix. The Tigers were a joke until Ilitch found some time on his hands - during the lockout - and decided he needed to spend some money on baseball. It was Yzerman's town for a very long time.

That said, the Pistons are having trouble with ticket sales, as are the Lions. The NFL can't sell out in Detroit either without corporate sponsors stepping up to buy extra tickets so local blackouts can be lifted. This has been the case for the last three games (wait, it's football season, correct?).

It's the economy.... and then a bunch of other things, including the local fans disdain for crappy schedule and the new NHL.

At 9:21 a.m., October 20, 2007, Anonymous Baroque said...

I sometimes wonder if Detroit actually plays any home games on Friday and Saturday nights. It seems as though most of their home games are during the week.

Might that be because some opponents prefer the Red Wings on their weekend home games so they can sell more tickets to fans of the visiting club if their home team has fewer supporter? Do the schedulers consider ticket sales in their efforts at all.

At 9:25 a.m., October 20, 2007, Anonymous Chris said...

Maybe they put new light bulbs in at Nassau for the Isles...the rink always looked so dim, as was the team....

At 2:49 p.m., October 20, 2007, Blogger The Acid Queen said...

Gotta love yet MORE excusemaking from the Detroit fans.

At 9:42 p.m., October 20, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

These aren't excuses, AQ, but possible reasons for a very real issue. You may want to twist it into some homerific need to belittle an entire fan base and that is your prerogative. Some of us actually are interested in discerning how much of the change in Detroit is due to the various factors being brought. I'm certain it's more than just one.

It's much easier to do when one has years of data with which to work vs a smaller sample size. To each his/her own, I suppose.

At 10:16 p.m., October 20, 2007, Blogger Nick said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 10:20 p.m., October 20, 2007, Blogger Nick said...

AQ, shut up. Sorry Detroit doesn't have the fan base that the hurricanes have. Maybe they should move to Hamilton.

Can we talk about something other than Detroit's attendance and how old Chris Chelios is? Detroit fans are tired of hearing about it.

Here's a fact regardless of how many people are packing into joe lewis arena - Detroit is one of the, if not the most popular team in the league. Detroit fans can be found in any arena in on the continent.

At 11:38 p.m., October 20, 2007, Blogger mike w said...

Come on guys, can't we all just agree that hockey doesn't belong in Nashville.


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