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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Other ways NHL teams are trying to make things up to the fans

She drove all that way and still saw fewer
red lights than Cory Schneider.

The NHL has returned to action after a lengthy work stoppage, and for many teams the first order of business was to get to work on repairing their relationship with angry fans. Whether it was free tickets, discounted merchandise or meet-and-greets with players, just about every team was trying to earn some positive publicity.

Of course, some franchises were more creative than others. Here's a look at how some of the teams around the NHL are trying to make things up to their fans.

Los Angeles Kings: Diehard fans will receive a complimentary DVD titled "The LA Kings from May 2012 to today: A complete history, as far as you know."

New York Rangers: Coach John Tortorella will answer one question from each of the 17,000 fans in attendance during a special pre-game event that's scheduled to last five minutes.

St. Louis Blues: In a special post-game auction, fans will have a chance to bid on the game-worn jerseys and equipment of the various opposing players who have been undressed by Vladimir Tarasenko.

Phoenix Coyotes: The first 10,000 fans get to try to explain the economics of hockey in Phoenix to the remaining 2,400 fans.

Ottawa Senators: Each game, one lucky fan will win a complimentary breakfast for two, which will be delivered the next morning as they're still sitting in the traffic jam in the Scotiabank Place parking lot.

Calgary Flames: General Manager Jay Feaster has announced that any fans purchasing seats for a regular season game will be eligible for a discount on this year's playoff tickets and hey wait everyone he's actually serious why are you all laughing?

Montreal Canadiens: All fans aged 18 and under get to casually mention that the Habs have never won a Cup in their lifetime and then enjoy the awkward silence from all the old guys sitting nearby.

Vancouver Canucks: One lucky spectator will get an official Canucks jersey and ball cap, a front-row seat, and also $7 million dollars, because they are Roberto Luongo.

Toronto Maple Leafs: One random fan gets a job as a special advisor to the MLSE board of governors, since that's apparently what ownership gives to people they have no intention of ever seeing again.

Nashville Predators: For each home game, fans who purchase tickets, concessions and team merchandise can have the chance to place their money directly into a wheelbarrow being held by a smirking Shea Weber.

Minnesota Wild: Zach Parise and Ryan Suter will take part in a special autograph session together, because God forbid they ever sign anything without getting each other's permission.

Colorado Avalanche: Any fans 14 and under will be offered heavily discounted tickets, and any second-line centers 21 and under will be offered a heavily discounted contract.

San Jose Sharks: One lucky fan will win a personal grooming kit that's still in its original wrapper because it's belonged to Brent Burns since last summer.

Detroit Red Wings: The team has promised a nonstop series of giveaways that will start on opening night and last all season long, although come to think of it they may have been referring to their new blueline.

Boston Bruins: Every fan at the home opener gets a chance to be repeatedly punched in the face by an enraged Jeremy Jacobs shouting "I REGRET NOTHING!"


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31 comments:

  1. Pittsburgh Penguins: owners decide they have no need to make things up to fans, given it takes more than a lockout to drive our crowds away, but will reward us nonetheless with a parade in Pittsburgh.

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    1. Please leave comedy to people who are actually funny.

      Unless you're implying that the Penguins are winning a Cup this year, in which case carry on with the humor.

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    2. Let me guess: you're a Philthy fan who thinks they are going to make the playoffs. We'll see who's laughing in June.

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    3. Hey, remember when the Penguins were five minutes away from getting moved due in part to bad attendance? Yeah... me too.

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    4. Actually I'm a HOCKEY fan who thinks it's pathetic how Flyers and Penguins fans fill up every damned hockey site out there with their incessant bickering. It's like watching gerbils in a cage- it's cute at first, boring later.

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    5. The Penguins' ownership instituted a boatload of giveaways and discounts for most of the season in order to make things up to the fans; that certainly didn't hurt post-lockout attendance.

      Not to mention many teams have had attendance slumps that nearly (or did) cost the franchises their markets; Washington, Calgary, Atlanta, Pheonix, Columbus, the Bolts, Panthers, the Stars, Hartford, etc. Other teams with consistently loyal fanbases like Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Edmonton, and Minnesota consistently under perform without losing much in the way of attendance. Granted, Sens and Sabres games are full of Leafs fans anyway and there's not much else to do in Edmonton, but the fact remains that argument extends in both directions. Just saying.

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    6. Until the Dallas Stars win back the youth hockey community and fix the mess it has become, they will ever fill the arena. All their free tickets given away for the home opener did not help, still many empty seats.

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    7. "Pittsburgh Penguins: owners decide they have no need to make things up to fans, given it takes more than a lockout to drive our crowds away"

      The irony... It took a lockout to SAVE your pathetic franchise. Unless the draft is rigged to hand them a superstar (Lemieux, Crosby, Malkin) nobody shows up.

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    8. No seriously, TheKid, that line wasn't funny at all.

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    9. The awkward moment when you actually can't tell if they are trying to be funny.....

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    10. Lol What at the Dallas Stars comment. The Stars sold out the opener, those seats are usually empty because corporate season ticket holders don't go to the games anyway which is a real shame

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    11. Sold out/given away, but didn't come close to filling all the seats even with the freebies. It won't be long until attendance is 80% at best. Texas hockey participation is biggest market in the US to be losing youth players. Adds a kink to Stars' efforts to build a fan base. There was a time where every rink had kids running around in Stars gear. Now, barely visible. Stars need to get involved in more than just having Jim Lites own rinks.

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    12. The Other, Better Looking, AnonymousJanuary 26, 2013 at 9:54 PM

      After two games the Pens were declared by some to be entering "a decade of dominance." They promptly lost to powerhouses like the Leafs and Jets, so their "decade of dominance" lasted four days. Which as a percentage is a bigger fail than Hitler's "Thousand Year Reich" lasting all of twelve years (0.011 to 0.012).

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  2. I don't think I like Jeremy Jacobs jokes because they do nothing more than actively remind me of the hatred I have for him.

    Loved it otherwise

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  3. "She drove all that way and still saw fewer
    red lights than Cory Schneider."

    That was awesome!! lmao

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  4. Ha!! That's me!! Hopefully I'll see less red lights in Anaheim on Friday.

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  5. Nailed Nashville and Detroit. Well done.

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  6. Outstanding work, DGB. The caption though..... pure awesome sauce.

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  7. Haha, my favourite part was the silly, obviously made up argument in the comments!

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  8. I didn't even make it past the Kings line... I'm a Ducks fan and holy crap that made my day.

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  9. Ottawa: One lucky fan gets to take home his/her very own Paul Maclean.

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  10. It's been a very interesting start so far this season, but I have enjoyed it!

    Check out what I wrote superbowl wise!
    http://nickolaisblog.wordpress.com/

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  11. The St. Louis / Vladimir Tarasenko joke was just pure gold. By far my favourite of the article

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  12. The Red Wings jab stung a little because, for the first time in my entire life, we don't have The Perfect Human to make up for everyone else's mistakes.

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    Replies
    1. I think half of the team are Griffins called up from the AHL..

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  13. Anyone who's been to a game at Scotiabank Place will know that the Ottawa joke was just perfect!
    Well done, DGB. Well done.

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  14. Corey Schneider could have been interchanged with Jimmy Howard but then people woould have to know who he is. =(
    lol Red Wings one was co-rrect if it hurts, but as usual, hardy f'ing har! huzzah huazzah!

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  15. At least Detroit fans don't b*tch about their team. They know they're always a solid franchise, even without the Perfect Human. Rebuilding in Progress!

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  16. New Jersey Devils: Free armored car service out of Newark for the first 100 fans. Management notes that this is still not a guarantee of safe passage.

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  17. There must be a flow of system as a general to see to it that everything is in order. This will be a big day for the fans out there!

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