The last couple of days have seen a huge amount of coverage locally and nationally about the plight of the Ottawa Senators. Despite being the number 1 team in the NHL today, and having one of the lowest payrolls in the league, they are bankrupt. They’re cashflow positive, if the debt is taken out of the picture, but can’t meet the payments on the crushing debt that it took to get them to this place. Rod Bryden says that we all need to go buy some tickets instead of watching the game on TV (Owner says fans can help save Ottawa Sentators). I think the problem is more than that, although I will admit that high ticket prices have kept me and my family away.
Rod Bryden, Bob Chiarelli, Ernie Eves, and the Ontario Lottery Corporation are all part of the solution to this problem.
- We need municipal taxes, and player payroll taxes to contribute to the problem.
- We need the Government of Ontario to make the same kinds of commitments to Ottawa that they made to Toronto when the Skydome was built.
- We need some of those sports lotteries that are so popular to contribute to the teams that they are riding on the backs of.
- And Rod, we need the game to be affordable to the average fan. I looked at buying a 1/4 season ticket for myself and my wife this year, and the bill was going to be $4,000. That’s for 11 games. My 7 year old and 5 year old sons would love to see the Sens play, but if the 4 of us went it would be over $500. I’d like to be a hockey fan, Mr. Bryden, but you don’t make it easy. We bought season tickets to the NAC pops-concerts instead (just 5 events, admittedly) for about $350.