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[Article] 'That's crazy': Hometown Golden Knights players struck by sparse Jets crowds


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'That's crazy': Hometown Golden Knights players struck by sparse Jets crowds

 

They may have found their hockey heaven on the Vegas strip, where they hit the Stanley Cup jackpot last season.

 

But Manitoba will always be home.

That’s why seeing the Winnipeg Jets’ attendance crash is more than a blip on the radar for the local contingent on the Golden Knights.

 

Told he wouldn’t be playing in front of a sell-out crowd on Thursday night — not even close to it — Oakbank product Brett Howden didn’t hide his surprise.

 

“Really?” the Vegas forward said. “That’s crazy. Whenever I played here and whenever I watched, growing up, it was always sold-out, and it’s so much fun to be part of an atmosphere like that. This building is known as being a sold-out and loud crowd. Hopefully they can get back to that.”

 

The Jets, 2.0 version, set an all-time attendance low earlier this week, selling just 11,226 tickets for a visit by Pierre-Luc Dubois and the L.A. Kings.

Those 4,000-plus empty seats came after a home opener some 2,000 fans short of a full house, and the Jets expects that trend to continue.

 

link to rest of article:

https://apple.news/Aqrn4ATArRAG1u2RqZE0ZbA

 

 

pfriesen@postmedia.com

Twitter: @friesensunmedia

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I really thought Winnipeg was one of those rabid Canadian hockey markets that would always draw good crowds. It's sad to see. It feels like NHL expansion has not been kind to Canadian teams. Who the hell wouldn't prefer to be a millionaire in Florida instead of Winnipeg? And be MORE of a millionaire because taxes are so much lower. Hard to build great teams that people want to watch with that kind of competitive disadvantage. 

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8 minutes ago, Kragar said:

Pretty pathetic for a team that rarely misses the playoffs.  Fans are gonna lose the team again if they don't smarten up.

 

Wonder what inappropriate place Bettman will send them to next time.

Pretty obvious....2nd team in Phoenix

:hurhur:

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Ah, what a tone-deaf comment from a privileged athlete earning millions.  Maybe if he paid even a little bit of attention, he'd realize Winnipegers have bigger things to worry about than hockey games.  Life really sucks in Manitoba right now.  So bad, that they voted out the old government in favour of a radically different party.

 

Then again, maybe Howden isn't as bad the very owner of the Jets team.  David Thomson is the wealthiest Canadian in the world and he is more intent on price-gouging concessions and threatening to leave again.

 

That's not even mentioning the actual state of the team itself, which is slowly earning the title of perennial underachiever.  They are like the Bruins, Wild, or Leafs: playoff choke artists.  Only difference is that those other team don't have to deal with a players' mutiny.

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Winnipeg has a small corporate market, and it is the corporate dollars that NHL teams depend on to pay big money for advertising, suites and season's tickets. Winnipeg also has only about 840,000 people while metropolitan Vancouver has about 2.4 million. Ticket prices are high, people have less and less disposable income, and perhaps fans are put off by persistent rumours of dissension and conflict in the dressing room. I also wouldn't be happy that Scheifele (30) and Hellebuyck (also 30) cashed in for identical eight-year, $8.5M AAV deals. For argument's sake, here is my estimate for the over/under on how many years these guys can perform at a level worthy of $8.5M: Scheifele 3.5; Hellebuyck 4.5. Change my mind.

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Doesn't mean they don't have a shit ton of fans. Manitoba is Jets country for sure. But I understand why people aren't going to games. Personally I almost enjoy watching the game at home more than going to a game. I have an amazing TV and sound system. I enjoy the broadcast. Don't have to deal with traffic, obnoxious drunks, annoying security, awkwardly sitting next to a stranger, crowded concourse, overpriced garbage food and $100 beers. 

 

Sure the atmosphere CAN be unbeatable and watching players live is undoubtedly more impressive and gives you a deeper appreciation for their skill. But there's no guarantees in hockey. The team could play like shit and the vibe could be dull. There's a good chance you end up leaving the game feeling conned out of the money you spent on the evening. 

 

I still try to go to at least one Canucks game a year. There's certain aspects of it that are way more enjoyable than watching at home. But there's also certain aspects of watching at home that are better.

 

I don't blame fans around Canada for not attending games as much. There's not that much of a point anymore. It doesn't mean, however, that the team is lacking fans. I know the Jets have plenty of diehard fans. Just wait until they make the playoffs next. They'll be out in full force.

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hey, I hear the league has already forgotten what happened in atlanta the last two times and want to give it another go around. 

 

it was smart that the peg chose to call their team the jets again, since it seems they'll eventually be flying away again. 

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6 hours ago, sashimi said:

Doesn't mean they don't have a shit ton of fans. Manitoba is Jets country for sure. But I understand why people aren't going to games. Personally I almost enjoy watching the game at home more than going to a game. I have an amazing TV and sound system. I enjoy the broadcast. Don't have to deal with traffic, obnoxious drunks, annoying security, awkwardly sitting next to a stranger, crowded concourse, overpriced garbage food and $100 beers. 

 

Sure the atmosphere CAN be unbeatable and watching players live is undoubtedly more impressive and gives you a deeper appreciation for their skill. But there's no guarantees in hockey. The team could play like shit and the vibe could be dull. There's a good chance you end up leaving the game feeling conned out of the money you spent on the evening. 

 

I still try to go to at least one Canucks game a year. There's certain aspects of it that are way more enjoyable than watching at home. But there's also certain aspects of watching at home that are better.

 

I don't blame fans around Canada for not attending games as much. There's not that much of a point anymore. It doesn't mean, however, that the team is lacking fans. I know the Jets have plenty of diehard fans. Just wait until they make the playoffs next. They'll be out in full force.

Don't forget the ability to pause and rewind, and presumably a lot less competition for the bathroom when the time comes!!

 

I remember watching the '94 series with my dad.  He would always have a rum n coke at hand while watching games, but of course every once in a while nature calls.  Twice in one period, he missed Canuck goals while making the trip. :classic_laugh:

 

I love going to games, but the ability to watch the game on my own time, and not have to worry about start times, or bathroom breaks or anything else is a huge bonus.

 

In the Jets' case, though, if their attendance is a trend, it will cost them a team.  Again.  And, I doubt they get another chance, unlike Atlanta.

 

 

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13 hours ago, Miss Korea said:

Ah, what a tone-deaf comment from a privileged athlete earning millions.  Maybe if he paid even a little bit of attention, he'd realize Winnipegers have bigger things to worry about than hockey games.  Life really sucks in Manitoba right now.  So bad, that they voted out the old government in favour of a radically different party.

 

Then again, maybe Howden isn't as bad the very owner of the Jets team.  David Thomson is the wealthiest Canadian in the world and he is more intent on price-gouging concessions and threatening to leave again.

 

That's not even mentioning the actual state of the team itself, which is slowly earning the title of perennial underachiever.  They are like the Bruins, Wild, or Leafs: playoff choke artists.  Only difference is that those other team don't have to deal with a players' mutiny.

“Radically different party” is click bait discourse

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FRIESEN: No shortage of fan feedback on Winnipeg Jets crowd collapse

 

Another home game, another alarm bell ringing at Portage and Hargrave.

Just 11,521 showed up to watch the rematch between Stanley Cup champion Vegas and the Winnipeg Jets, Thursday.

 

This after an all-time low of 11,226 for the Florida Panthers, Tuesday.

So in back-to-back games, the Jets have registered the two lowest attendances of the 2.0 era, not including pandemic-restricted games.

 

Fans this week have flooded my inbox with reaction and, more importantly, reasons for the crowd collapse.

 

No. 1 on the list: bad customer service.

 

Let’s start with a season-ticket holder from Day 1 in 2011.

Even though he lived out of province at the time, he rarely missed a game for the first few years.

 

Last season, he was told renovations were going to turn his seats into lounge seats with a significant price jump. Pay more or move, he was told.

“I asked True North if they could work with season ticket holders, and let us stay in our seats for another season,” he wrote, via email. “And maybe I would be willing to pay the extra to keep them the season after. No dice.”

His options to move were limited.

The kicker: he was on the season-ticket advisory committee.

 

“Still, wouldn’t work with a guy that bleeds Winnipeg Jets hockey,” he wrote. “I have 4 kids… that’s 4 kids that would have carried on my season tickets forever.”

 

He cancelled.

 

Sometimes it’s smaller things that can endear a business to its patrons – or turn them right off.

 

Mark is another fan whose family has been season-ticket holders since 2011.

 

He showed up for the game against Florida and saw the Jets were giving away toques.

 

The seat next to him was empty, so he figured if nobody showed up to claim that toque, he’d take it for his grandson.

 

After the second period, an usher scooped it up, giving Mark a rude brush-off when he asked about it.

Meanwhile, a “buffoon” sitting behind him “who is six beers deep and is dropping f-bombs left and right when there are little kids around” gets no response.

 

“We love going to the rink, and we love watching the games,” Mark concluded. “We have seriously begun the discussion of not renewing.”

 

Over on X, what used to be Twitter, people shared similar stories.

“I was part of a group for 9 years,” Brian told me. “They made me think that I should be thrilled for just having tickets and consistently increased the price by 3% every year. Glad I am out.”

He’s not alone: the Jets have seen their season-ticket base shrink from 13,000 to less than 10,000, with no waiting list.

 

Last spring, the team launched an aggressive marketing campaign that included video clips of the departure of the original Jets.

It obviously backfired.

 

“The Jets sat back, didn’t listen, didn’t care & allowed fans to leave because of their ignorance to the situation,” is how one fan, Greg, put it. “Then put out the most obscene ad during the start of playoffs.”

 

Another, also on X, sent a message saying five years of season-ticket ownership at $15,000 per year was enough for him.

 

“I told the head of the reps if you keep treating fans like sh–, mark my word you will never have a full house again. I was 100% correct.”

 

Complaints about the product not living up to the price are probably No. 2 on the list.

 

 

link to the rest of the article:

https://apple.news/AanqLtZXmQf6UVy6Xt3106g

 

pfriesen@postmedia.com

Twitter: @friesensunmedia

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On 10/20/2023 at 12:15 PM, Kragar said:

Don't forget the ability to pause and rewind, and presumably a lot less competition for the bathroom when the time comes!!

 

I remember watching the '94 series with my dad.  He would always have a rum n coke at hand while watching games, but of course every once in a while nature calls.  Twice in one period, he missed Canuck goals while making the trip. :classic_laugh:

 

I love going to games, but the ability to watch the game on my own time, and not have to worry about start times, or bathroom breaks or anything else is a huge bonus.

 

In the Jets' case, though, if their attendance is a trend, it will cost them a team.  Again.  And, I doubt they get another chance, unlike Atlanta.

 

 

Yeah true I didn't even mention that. I watch a lot of games about three hours after they've already happened due to my work schedule.  

 

Having the replay available on the Sportsnet app has been a huge bonus. Just gotta make sure I avoid accidentally hearing the final score somewhere 😂.

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4 hours ago, sashimi said:

Yeah true I didn't even mention that. I watch a lot of games about three hours after they've already happened due to my work schedule.  

 

Having the replay available on the Sportsnet app has been a huge bonus. Just gotta make sure I avoid accidentally hearing the final score somewhere 😂.

Definitely a risk about the score, although not being in BC anymore, it's less of a risk for me than before.

 

I almost always start watching about an hour after, and skip over the ads, most commentary, intermissions, and even dump outs during the PK. I miss a little, but can generally get a game done in under 2 hrs. Faster when they suck :classic_angry:, as I jump ahead a lot when that happens.

 

Wife gave up watching hockey after Kesler bailed on us, so I often try to keep the game as short as I can, so I'm not hogging the TV so much.

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Worked in Winnipeg last year (pretty much the whole hockey season) man that barn can get rocking not a bad seat in the whole arena too, really surprised by this because that and the bombers is all winnipeg has in my opinion, and you can get last minute Jets tickets for fairly cheap i found aswell. That’s all you’d hear about is the Jets from coworkers, in the grocery store, bars and liquor stores. Manitoba is all Jets Country and they better get their butts back in those seats

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On 10/22/2023 at 9:07 PM, Kragar said:

Definitely a risk about the score, although not being in BC anymore, it's less of a risk for me than before.

 

I almost always start watching about an hour after, and skip over the ads, most commentary, intermissions, and even dump outs during the PK. I miss a little, but can generally get a game done in under 2 hrs. Faster when they suck :classic_angry:, as I jump ahead a lot when that happens.

 

Wife gave up watching hockey after Kesler bailed on us, so I often try to keep the game as short as I can, so I'm not hogging the TV so much.

 

lol I'm in the same boat except my girlfriend is just straight up not a sports person. I usually get home between 9 and 10 and will try to get through the game by 11:30 when she's off work. I usually pull it off and can be present and spend time with her but if there's overtime she's out of luck 😂

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