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Bobcats Tickets

A not-insignificant part of the NBA experience is buying tickets. Last year, five friends and I split a pair of upper deck season tickets. Four of those gentlemen are not Bobcats fans, and thus they tended to bail on games, allowing me to attend most of the home games in person.

This year, the other Bobcats fan in that group has moved to New York, and the four non-Cats dudes are uninterested in renewing. The Official Girlfriend of Rufus on Fire, though still more attached to the Hornets than the Cats, has offered to step up and buy in to at least a few games with me. Since I now live within easy walking distance of the Cable Box, whichever games we don't buy in advance, I'll attend with a walkup ticket purchase.

Here's the thing: The only reason I'm even bothering with a ticket package is because I'm one of the crazies (we may only number in the dozens, let alone the hundreds) that actively wishes to attend every game, and I'd like to commit to a good chunk of games in advance so that my plans are set. The thing is, I'd also like to buy my way into premium seats for a few particular opponents.

Seeing as I don't have seven grand to blow on lower bowl season tickets, the best course of action is probably to buy the half-season ticket package, separately buy a few lower bowl tickets, and then walk up and buy tickets to every other game I can make. The other possibility, which I'll have to address with a sales representative, is buying a full season ticket package, and then upgrading for select games, perhaps even before the season starts.

If I weren't one of the crazies, I'd have no reason to go through this whole process. If the Bobcats are a casual deal for you, then you have no reason to buy a ticket package. Walk right up. Buy your ticket when you get to the arena. If you want to see the Lakers or Celtics, you'll have to buy your ticket now, but that's pretty much it for the high-demand games.

Because of the Cats' unique place in Charlotte, as both savior of NBA ball and reminder of the painful Hornets split, they are in position to try novel season ticket sales strategies. Currently, they employ a standard seating chart with different prices for different sections. But how many of the seats are actually sold to season ticket holders? How many of the unsold seats do they expect to sell after the season starts?

In premium seating, I suspect that there are a few games that sell out, and the rest of the time, the seats go unsold because no one bought them for the season, and no one's going to pay sixty bucks for a walk up ticket. The solution is auction selling. Maybe I won't pay forty dollars per game for a ticket in the lower bowl, but I'd definitely pay twenty dollars per game for those tickets, and if that's the most anyone who bothers to check the team web site is willing to pay for them, wouldn't you take that? Everyone wins. That's more money than I'd pay up front for tickets in the upper deck, and because I'm a devoted fan willing to bid at auction for seats, I get to sit in a great location for less than the "Buy Now" price. Revenue is revenue. More teams in similar positions should try auctioning off seats.