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Sabres cite new CBA as reason for raising ticket prices

Apr 28, 2013, 2:19 PM EDT

Terry Pegula AP

Sabres fans have plenty of reasons to be grumpy with their team after this season, but now they’ve got a reason to be straight-up angry.

John Vogl of The Buffalo News notes the team is raising ticket prices by 4-percent next year and that increase is thanks to… the new Collective Bargaining Agreement? A letter from the team to season ticket holders lays out their reasons for the increase.

“As part of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement with our players, all teams must produce revenue primarily through ticket sales in order to keep the stability of the league and its franchises strong,” John Sinclair, vice president of tickets and services, wrote in the letter.

A four-percent raise isn’t much, but the team did raise prices 12.2% before last season. Meanwhile, owner Terry Pegula pulled back on his optimistic hopes for a Stanley Cup within three years of his purchase of the team and now this. You wonder why Buffalo fans are dour.

Producing revenue through ticket prices is how the business works and the Sabres have traditionally been a team with low prices and that’s something that tends to irk the other owners. Pulling this after a lockout-shortened season where the home team wasn’t in the hunt most of the year is awkward at best. Sending the note out on Fan Appreciation Day makes it all look a lot worse.

  1. tarotsujimoto74 - Apr 28, 2013 at 2:31 PM

    Don’t really care, fairly cheap tickets compared to many teams and as a student I can get some for $25 a piece.

    • DonkeyStick - Apr 28, 2013 at 4:15 PM

      You get what you pay for!

  2. JoeAvg - Apr 28, 2013 at 2:53 PM

    If Scotty Bowman couldn’t bring them a Stanley Cup then they are truely cursed. With the exception of running an expansion franchise for a couple of years (that he took to the finals as the best of the new teams) it has followed him everywhere else he has gone, except Buffalo.

  3. gospitfires - Apr 28, 2013 at 3:26 PM

    wasnt the whole point of the lockout to get more money into owners pockets? the cap is going down what 6 mill next year, the owners are getting a larger percentage of revenues, and the price still goes up to watch that product? no thanks, unless the price hike is gonna be paid to the next GM.

  4. pondhockeyallstar - Apr 28, 2013 at 3:32 PM

    hahahaa…. buffalo is the worst.

    i guess pretty much every team is raising prices though so its really not that odd compared to everything else. leave it up to the nhl to kick itself in the dick when things are on the up-turn and looking better

  5. mustbechris - Apr 28, 2013 at 3:58 PM

    Like…just say you’re raising ticket prices because that’s what teams do. Don’t blame it on the new CBA that is the product of a lockout that was waged solely for the purpose of increasing the share of revenue that the owners get. People will deal with the ticket hike as long as you’re not insulting their collective intelligence. Your fans aren’t stupid, at least not as stupid as the Sabres’ front office appears to be.

  6. icelovinbrotha215 - Apr 28, 2013 at 5:16 PM

    Raising ticket prices after a disappointing season never sits well with the locals.

  7. hockeyflow33 - Apr 28, 2013 at 5:31 PM

    Owners get a higher percentage of revenue and the cap is going down next year…how does this equate to a need to raise prices?

    • 19to77 - Apr 28, 2013 at 7:37 PM

      It’s amazing how delusional great wealth seems to make people. They honestly seem to think that no-one’s going to ask this question? They’re either moronic or insane.

      • richc111 - Apr 29, 2013 at 10:43 AM

        I will ask a question, why do a lot of people make the owners the villian. the whole bunch on the, just like all pro sports, make million (the players too!). Running a business like this is a huge undertaking. I get a kick out of the guys that make the simple view that owners are just pocketing all this cash. I will ask you 1 question. What has got cheaper in the past few years. You know that these guys don’t skate to the next city and live at the rink and eat snow. Profit = revenue – costs. Cost = all expenditures that go into running a business, not just salaries. 25 players in Buffalo made a total of 61 million for a team that hasn’t won a playoff seriers in 7 years. Can we agree that everyone is making about pretty well in the NHL, except for some of the fans that pay to see bad teams. But if we can’t agree that everyone is doing well. at least spare me the greedy owners talk.

  8. thedavesiknowiknow - Apr 28, 2013 at 7:21 PM

    I’m not sure why this is a story: did anybody’s tickets go down? I’m really asking.

  9. billsin20xx - Apr 28, 2013 at 7:33 PM

    The bad thing is they are going to blame an attendance drop next year on this, where the real reason will be that it looks like they are going to keep the loser Regier instead of firing him.
    True example of bad management, how can you keep a guy in charge of a loser franchise the last 12 years around to rebuild one more time???

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