SBD/September 21, 2010/Franchises

Franchise Notes

Twins Will Surpass The 3 Million Mark In Attendance Tonight At Target Field

In Minneapolis, Joe Christensen notes the Twins drew an announced crowd of 39,228 for last night's game against the Indians at Target Field, the team's "72nd consecutive sellout." The team's "3 millionth fan will pass through Target Field's turnstiles" tonight, leaving the Twins "with five regular-season home games to shatter their franchise attendance record of 3,032,672, set in 1988." Christensen notes the AL Central race "has become a landslide," and the draw "isn't one individual player." Twins 1B Justin Morneau "has been out since July 7," and C Joe Mauer "will have an MRI exam Tuesday after missing Monday's game because of a sore knee." But the Twins with last night's win "improved to 50-25 at Target Field," so it is "no wonder the fans keep coming back" (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 9/21).

T IME FOR PAY BACK: The NLL Orlando Titans will not field a team during the '11 season, and NLL VP/Communications Doug Fritts said that the team has not told the league "when it plans to refund its season ticket holders." The league "believes the team should do so immediately." However, Fritts noted each team in the league is independently owned, so the league is "not in a position to issue the refunds" (ORLANDO BUSINESS JOURNAL, 9/17 issue).

PLENTY OF GOOD SEATS AVAILABLE: In Columbus, Tom Reed noted the Blue Jackets have "drawn fewer than 10,000 fans only once for a regular-season game in Nationwide Arena." But that is "likely to change," as Blue Jackets President Mike Priest Sunday said that "some games could attract 8,500 fans early in the season." The team's "poor record" last season, its "losing history and the stagnant economy have made for an unsavory stew." Season-ticket sales are "lagging nearly 25 percent behind last year's pace," and the team has sold 7,700 season-ticket equivalents. But Priest said that the "inability to move six- and 10-game plans ... is where the Jackets really notice the shortfall" (COLUMBUS DISPATCH, 9/19).

BOLTING AHEAD: In St. Petersburg, Damian Cristodero noted Lightning Owner Jeff Vinik Saturday "praised GM Steve Yzerman and CEO Tod Leiweke, and said there is 'great momentum starting' in terms of improving corporate participation and ticket sales, though he declined to be specific." Vinik: "It's a process. We're going to improve this organization and the brand over time. ... We want to develop this organization into something the whole community loves and respects" (ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, 9/19).

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