There have been a myriad of ways the NHL has repeatedly screwed over its longtime fans, but the most egregious of these just might be the way it’s handling the Winter Classic at Wrigley Field.
Today, the league announced that it would hold a lottery for the general public to get tickets.
A general public random drawing will be held to determine who will have an opportunity to purchase the remaining tickets with a limited number of tickets set aside for the community ticket initiative described below. Fan registration for the random drawing will be conducted through the Chicago Blackhawks’ official website (www.chicagoblackhawks.com) beginning on or about Noon ET/11 a.m. CT, Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2008, through on or about 11:59 a.m. ET/10:59 a.m. CT, Friday, Nov. 28, 2008. Registrations received after the deadline will not be accepted. There is no fee to register. Limit one entry per person. Each registrant selected will have an opportunity to purchase a limited number of tickets.
Which would be cool. Except this ignores that guaranteed opportunity to purchase tickets to this is only given to full Blackhawks season ticket holders.
So the 14,000 full season ticket holders will take up 34ish percent of Wrigley’s 41,000 seats. The NHL then has the right to decide who gets the rest. They’ll give out some to local youth hockey programs, which, if you look at the seating chart I posted last week, won’t be that many. So call it 25,000 seats the NHL gets to give out to whomever they like apart from youth hockey programs. The league will certainly hand some out to local sponsors and the Red Wings organization will take about 8,000 (that’s the rumor at least), what’s that leave?
Oh know who else gets a crack at tickets before the general public? The “NHL Winter Classic partners” meaning the clowns at AMP Energy and all the other stupid crap they’re always peddling on Versus. Doesn’t make a lot of sense because the Winter Classic is ostensibly for the benefit of the fans, right?
They are effectively ignoring the Blackhawks’ partial season ticket holders, the Red Wings’ full season ticket holders, and hell, even Cubbies’ season ticket holders who deserve it more than the clowns the NHL will eventually give these tickets to.
Good work, Bettman.