The Panthers' great ticket giveaway
We've seen all sorts of wacky promotions in the NHL, especially from teams that have traditionally had trouble selling tickets, but this season in Florida, they're literally giving them away.
All you need is a driver's license:
The promotion advises that: "It may be your first game, but it won't be your last." The small print goes onto say that the invitation is "good one time only" and that the program "will remain in effect until everybody in Florida experiences the excitement of a Panthers game at least once."
We'll just call it "indefinitely."
In order to get the tickets, Florida residents simply have to fill out this two-step form that involves entering your contact info and choosing which game you'd like to attend.
The Panthers have had a tough time selling tickets for almost every year of their existence, but did manage to pull in an announced crowd of 18,401 (96-per-cent capacity) for Saturday's home opener. The team has averaged between 15,000 and 16,000 as an "announced" ticket figure the past eight seasons, but is widely regarded as the league leader in giveaways.
Florida reportedly comped an average of about 2,800 tickets a game in 2006-07, which was actually down from 4,150 per game (!) in 2005-06.
A lot of people have experienced freebies in South Florida in the past, which makes you wonder just how this new promotion is going to be any more persuasive in terms of wooing repeat customers. If anything, I imagine it will outrage season's ticket holders who forked out real dollars to attend games that apparently don't have much value at all.