I really thought this one would slide under the proverbial radar, but likely for precisely that reason it has blossomed.
The lean-years Panthers have historically been a professional sports case-study in attempts at selling a subpar product to a market that has a) unending entertainment options and b) a population understandably wearied to the point of apathy regarding their local hockey team. Even on the remarkably occasional cusp of success, the club has been willing to double-down in an effort to get fannies into a sea of empty form-fitted plastic seats. Sometimes it bumps up the numbers, other times falls below expectations, but short of yet another Keenan Regime in Sunrise, any press is good press when the franchise is located south of the Verizon Center.
How's the program going? The Sun-Sentinel's Sarah Talalay dug up some numbers as of early Monday evening:
So far, the team has sold slightly more than 50 full season ticket equivalents through the “The Perfect Plan” and turned away about 50 others, either because their offers were rejected or an agreement couldn’t be reached, a team spokesman said.
One person within the organization confirmed to me this afternoon that interest - and sales - have been "strong", outside of the expected $1 deals thrown their way.
Whether Panthers COO Michael Yormark personally devised this ticket program or not, his office and staffers should be commended for - if nothing else - generating interest around the league and sports world in the Florida Panthers. From CNBC to Puck Daddy to XM NHL Home Ice - where the subject was a hot topic for the better part of 25 minutes during their Tuesday drivetime "Power Play" show - folks near and far are talking it up. Like respectable,"Wow, that's a bold move" talk.
As for longtime season ticket holders, we're looking forward to hearing your thoughts on what may be a touchy subject.