Salk: Seattle has high bar to meet with NHL season ticket drive

Feb 27, 2018, 8:00 AM
Las Vegas set a benchmark for Seattle to meet when it comes to excitement for an NHL team. (AP)...
Las Vegas set a benchmark for Seattle to meet when it comes to excitement for an NHL team. (AP)

I want to dominate the NHL season ticket drive. I don’t want it to be close. I don’t want the prospective ownership group to have to keep advertising after Thursday.

I want to show the NHL that we are not only ready, but pumped beyond belief.

NHL season ticket drive in Seattle starts March 1

I want it to be like when Led Zeppelin sold out six straight nights at Madison Square Garden in 1977 without even advertising tickets. Like when Adele was here a few years ago. Like when Hamilton went on sale everywhere!

This is going to be hard in Seattle. We have pro sports here, and have for a long time. This isn’t our first chance to look like a big-time city. We see how that gets folks excited in places like Columbus or Sacramento – cities trying to jump into a national conversation. Cities like Las Vegas, which is the most recent example.

To keep up with Vegas, the new Seattle team needs to sell 5,000 seats in the first two days, 9,000 in the first month. While Vegas is a much smaller metropolitan area, it sold all 16,000 of its available season tickets, though it took them seven months to do so.

Seattle is a bigger, wealthier city. Is that enough to compensate for the passion of a first pro franchise for a city like Vegas had? I would hope so.

This is a chance to show that we are a great sports town, not just a bandwagon-jumping town. And I think it’s a test.

A test from the NHL – obviously. But also for the NBA to see how the new arena will be received, and the country in general to see if we can be a mature sports town.

I hope we pass.

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