I forgot which commissioner it was that said it on the USCHO podcast during the Frozen Four (I want to say maybe the wcha commish), but one of them brought up the idea of reworking the timing of the Frozen Four.
There might be more voices hoping to change up the format than Iíve given credit in previous posts.
How long it takes to sell out trended upwards for a while. Then it would only be an automatic sellout in Boston or St. Paul. As the trend has continued, now it is nearly never a sellout, certainly not in a market like Buffalo (I imagine Pittsburgh will be better, but not a whole lot). Although the NCAA won't admit it out loud, the interest in tickets to this event has gone down since it's peak in the late 90's and early 2000's. This year's attendance may be an aberration in that it was ridiculously low, but still a result of the decrease. They're trying (through articles like the one on USCHO this week) to act shocked and stunned that the attendance was so low and needs to be investigated relating to what went wrong in 2019. The problem isn't 2019, it has been going in this direction for a while. They don't want to admit that the price of tickets has got to be a major factor. They've priced certain long-time FF customers out of the event, period. But the prices just keep going up. I still go, but don't know for how much longer at the rate it's going. My wife is more annoyed by it each year.
To me the root cause of attendance woes is pretty clear... Follow the $$$.
All the other factors people have listed, debated, etc on this thread are not new: Final Four, Masters, weather, NHL playoffs, 11-day layoff after 1/4-finals, etc. They've all been in place for quite some time. The demand for tickets keeps going down.
As for the weather, any earlier than Final Four weekend would be taking the event into potentially even worse weather conditions that could hamper folks' ability to even get to the event, kind of like we had for our friends from Minnesota this past week. I'd actually be curious to know how many fans couldn't get here in time for the semi-final games because of the snowstorm and subsequent cancelled flights. They announced 13k+ attendance at the semi's, but even that was clearly an exaggeration. I'd be surprised if there were even much more than 10k in the building.
Can't we all just get along?
Always remember... This is just a game we're talking about here. Let's not take it all too seriously.
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