Wednesday, November 27, 2013

At the Barclays Center, many empty seats for Legends Classic college tourney

The Brooklyn Nets, despite their losses, have come close to filling the Barclays Center this year (and tonight they play the Los Angeles Lakers), but college basketball--not so much.

When I emerged from the subway near the Barclays Center last night at about 7:20 pm, not long after the first game of the Legends Classic college hoops doubleheader began, a scalper offered me tickets.

He started at $20, but quickly agreed to $5.

I asked to see the tickets. They were comps, marked $0.00. Indeed, several people told me the arena was giving out many freebies. So it's understandable some recipients were trying to make a few bucks.

When I returned to the arena plaza at about 9:30, around the time the second game was starting, between Stanford University and the University of Pittsburgh, the below photo shows the view peeking through from the main doors.

Presumably there were more people for the first game, but I'm sure arena operators didn't want the building to be that empty. (For planning purposes, they had estimated 10,000 people might attend.)

As the screenshot above right shows, tickets started at $15, plus $5.35 in fees, probably too high a price point for midweek college games featuring non-elite teams. Wouldn't it be better to charge $5-$10 to paying customers rather than paper the house?

A few attendees noticed the emptiness:

Indeed, as the below photo shows, there was hardly a crowd in the better seats, either.
Photo via David Greenwald/Twitter

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