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TAMPA EXECS TRY TO CATCH LIGHTNING IN A BOTTLE TO BOOST GATE
Published December 9, 1997
According to official NHL documents obtained by Tom Jackson of the TAMPA TRIBUNE, in seven games played at the Ice Palace through November 14, the Lightning were "substantially" behind last season's year-to-date totals in paid attendance, percentage of arena capacity and ticket revenue. The Lightning were down nearly 26% in paid attendance, down 20% in arena capacity, and down 11.1% in ticket revenue. Lightning President Steve Oto: "We are not quite pleased." Jackson reports that this comes after a nearly 20% increase in ticket prices. While the Capitals, Avalanche and Oilers joined the Lightning in raising ticket prices, only the Lightning have a year-to-year decrease in ticket revenue to show for their increase. Oto attributed the team's early-season struggle to the success of the NFL Bucs and the Lightnings' poor start (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 12/9).