Dear Sean Henry,
Keep The Red Out, eh? Pretty catchy slogan. Other than that, your marketing/ticketing plan is sad. Really. Let me explain why, because I’m sure you’re still patting yourself on the back for this one.
First, you’re literally planning on artificially lowering the attendance for the Nashville Predators. If not for this game, for the second game that any Blackhawks fans do buy tickets to. Hypothetically, fans from Chicago could purchase tickets to a game against Nashville and then laugh their asses off when they all buy tickets to the 12/21/13 game against Montreal that is presumably going to air on Hockey Night In Canada. Oh man.
“Welcome to Hockey Night in Canada, where Matt Cullen (lol) and the Nashville Predators are set to take on superstars PK Subban, Carey Price and the Montreal Canadiens. The crowd’s a bit light here at Bridgestone Arena, but hopefully some people start to show up,” would probably be how Bob Cole would open the broadcast. Seriously, you could potentially have a few hundred or a few thousand empty seats for a nationally televised game. Great job.
Then there’s this brilliant quote: “And they’re going to help us continue to grow our roster by building our (revenue at the) gate. It’s that simple. In the end, we’re building something pretty special. If we have to do it off the backs of their fans a little bit, I’m not apologizing for it.”
By all means, Sean, don’t apologize. I sincerely hope that you, and the Predators organization, believe that having opposing fans pay for extra tickets helps you grow your roster. Not, you know, quality drafting and player development. I’m 100% positive that all of Chicago would pay for 5 tickets apiece if it guaranteed that you guys continued to add players like Matt Cullen, Matt Hendricks, Carter Hutton and their sloppy seconds in Viktor Stalberg. Zero of those players would get top 6 minutes for the Blackhawks.
Honestly, this minor league stunt is being run by a team whose website honest to goodness has a poll question that says this:
Who will lead the Preds in scoring in 2013-2014?
Matt Cullen (old)
Shea Weber (misses Ryan Suter)
Viktor Stalberg (lol)
Colin Wilson (career high of 35 pts)
Mike Fisher (also old)
I’m also thinking that the bars, restaurants and hotels around the area must be thrilled that a local, oft-defeated sports franchise is attempting to keep potential tourists out of town. I bet that goes over really well.
Sean, do you want to actually Keep the Red Out? Draft better. Make better trades than ones involving 13 feet of bad. Don’t sign below average face punchers to 4 year contracts. Win some games and continue to grow your fanbase. It’ll eventually be hard enough for opposing teams to get tickets – ask Detroit fans who are wanting to go the United Center.
Until then, take the money from Hawks fans and ask Mr. Poile if he’s interested in spending it on good players.
Enjoy being a bottom feeder in Conference III,
PS. We love Seth Jones and Filip Forsberg.