SBD/February 16, 2011/Franchises

Blake Griffin Brings Attention To Clippers Both In L.A. And On The Road

Griffin-led Clippers filling Staples Center to 95% of capacity since Dec. 18
Things are "going well for the Clippers these days, with the franchise in the middle of its longest stretch run of fame on the national media circuit in recent memory, thanks to" rookie F Blake Griffin, according to Pedro Moura of ESPN L.A. There is a "long list of Griffin-fueled financial impacts for and around the Clippers this season, from jersey and merchandise sales to tickets -- at home and on the road -- to rising parking prices." An authentic white Griffin jersey is "sold out on the Clippers' official team website," while most other options, "replicas and the like, have only XXL sizes available, with the rest out of stock." The NBA has yet to release midseason jersey sales figures, but sports business experts "expect him to appear on the Top 15 list when it does arrive -- a rare feat for a rookie and a rarer feat for a Clipper." Clippers President Andy Roeser said, "We're seeing all the trends that you would expect to see. Ticket sales are up, attendance is up, television ratings are up, website traffic is up, jersey sales are up." Moura noted entering Monday, the Clippers "had played 12 road games since they began the run that vaulted them into the national spotlight in mid-December." In all 12 of those games, the opposing teams "either bettered their average attendance numbers for the season or sold out their arenas." The teams sold "about 1,300 more tickets, on average, when playing the Clippers than for the rest of their home games." Those numbers -- "19,411 fans per game in their past 12 road games, dating back to Dec. 18 -- would be the best in the league if they held up for a full season." The Clippers last season "were 29th in the NBA with an average of 16,225 fans per game on the road." In the "same two-month span when road attendance has gone up, the Clippers are averaging a healthy 18,100 fans per game at home," filling Staples Center to 95% of its capacity. Roeser: "People are talking about Blake all over the country and all over the world. We're noticing a trend, too, where our attendance on the road is up. People are wanting to see Blake play in other cities as well" (ESPNLA.com, 2/15).
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