Monday, December 12, 2011

Tickets, tickets anyone want tickets?

With Christmas break almost upon us, perhaps hockey fans across North America are looking for a little puck to go with their Christmas vacation plans, if so, we provide a helpful guide as to where in North America you might find easily available and rather inexpensive seats to watch the NHL.

We can't guarantee that the match ups will be to your wildest dreams mind you, but if just experiencing the pace of an NHL game is on your Christmas list, here courtesy of our Attendance tracker, are some of the hot spots for easy to find seats (in some cases you may feel like the game is being played just for you, your family and your friends)

So grab a map and check your bank balances as we start our tour of the NHL's least popular teams, places where good seats it seems are always available.

Dallas, recently out of bankruptcy hasn't exactly been a place for crowds to gather, ten times so far in this 2011-12 season the Stars have drawn less than 13,000 fans.  The LA Kings have been there twice and failed to crack the 13,000 mark, with a mixed batch of NHL teams making up the remaining 8 games where attendance has been low.  According to the Stub Hub Dallas Stars ticket site, Dallas tickets between December 15th and January 16th are going anywhere from $10.00 to $27.00, New Yeas Eve however is pretty steep for centre ice and the Bruins at 276.

 Long Island, where the Islanders have so far had the largest amount of games with attendance less than 13,000,  nine games so far on the Islanders home schedule have featured attendance below that level, including surprisingly games with Montreal and Philadelphia.  According to Stub Hub's Islanders ticket site, Islander tickets between December 15th and January 16th range from $5.98 to $14.00. When the Flyers come to town in January, you could be at centre ice low for as low as $53.00

Phoenix continues to find the turnstiles turning rather infrequently, the Coyotes attracting less than 13,000 on eight different nights so far this season. Divisional rivals Los Angeles and Anaheim are among those that surprisingly haven't been able to entice the fans to make the drive to the rink. Frugal hockey fans will like the Stub Hub index where between December 15 and January 21 Coyote tickets are priced at 4.99 at the low end, and for example a club seat at 73 dollars for centre ice low for the Oilers on December 15..

Columbus is next on our tour of the attendance bottom feeders, where the Blue Jackets gate receipts have been on the low side for five games, including an appearance from the Stanley Cup finalists the Vancouver Canucks. Stub Hubs charting from December 15-January 17 features pricing 8 to 15 dollars for the low end, with New Years Eve visit from the Capitals calling for 89 dollars for centre ice tickets.

Colorado has struggled a few times at the turnstile as well, three games with less than 13,000 in the seats have taken place so far in the 2011-12 season, as LA, Phoenix and Dallas proved to be less than an interesting draw for Rocky Mountain hockey fans. The Stub Hub directory features tickets from December 13 to January 18 ranging from $6-$18 dollars. The Capitals are perhaps the best draw of the next month with a December 17th game with the Avs where the high end centre ice seats can be had for 84 dollars.

Other locales that have had games below 13,000 and may make for easily accessible seats in prime locations include Anaheim, Carolina. Florida and New Jersey.

All in all, for a hockey vacation at Christmas time, for a number of destinations, the actual tickets may be the least expensive item on your travel expenses list.

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