Written by: Will Rymer (@PopeWolfgang)
Edited by: Curt Ashcraft (@cashcraft740)
Follow us on Twitter! @OS_Report
If you’ve ever taken any level of economics, you know that the supply and demand model is on full display when it comes to sporting events. For example, tickets for the series between the Washington Capitols and the New York Islanders vary greatly depending on who the home team is.
Tickets to a pivotal game five in Washington could be found for about $50. However, tickets to game six in New York were upwards of $160. Maybe the tickets just get more expensive as the series progresses, right? Nope, game seven tickets, back in DC mind you, started out at $70.
This is part of the unfairness that comes with being a fan. If you’re a dedicated fan, a bad season or two can be much easier on the wallet. When a team gets good, the true fans are essentially made to pay a bandwagon tax. People want to see greatness, whether they support the team or not. Following a rudimentary supply and demand model, it’s easy to see that the more people who want to attend, the higher the ticket prices.
Fair enough. Although it may be an irritation to some when your hometown team has some success, and other people want a piece of the action, making you pay a premium price, it’s something most fans are okay with. Perhaps the disparity in ticket prices in different cities is the real killer.
It’s hard to be a Canadiens fan if you’re not the owner of a trust fund. Tickets that were $50 in DC were over $250 in Montreal. Looking for a family outing? You, your spouse, and the three kids will run up a tab comfortably over $1,000. However, in DC, you could take your entire family to the game for the price of one Canadiens ticket.
Something about these numbers seem surreal. Over $1,000 to take your family to a game? Why is it the same price to take your family to a game in a different city as it is for you to make the lonely trek yourself where you live?
So what makes a great sports town? The next time somebody goes on about how even the bars are packed when a game is on, think about why this is. Is it because the Mark Cubans of the world are filling the seats of the stadium while those who live in the city day after day are made to watch at a distance? There’s nothing wrong with having a city captivated by their team, but there is something special about having people who represent all walks of life who are able to attend.
Every city has diehard fans, some more than others. It wouldn't be a stretch to say that most people are not as willing to sacrifice a reasonable ticket price for an added bit of history. The Canadiens have ridiculous ticket prices where you would actually have to be a near millionaire to take your family out for some playoff hockey without cursing yourself for wasting so much money on just a silly game. Especially if you lose.