SBD/June 7, 2011/Franchises

True North Cancels Some Season-Ticket Orders For Alleged Violations

True North Sports & Entertainment Dir of Communications & Hockey Operations Scott Brown yesterday said that Winnipeg's NHL franchise "has already cancelled a number of season ticket orders from people who didn't want to play by the rules," according to Kirbyson & Giroday of the WINNIPEG FREE PRESS. Brown did not "go into specific details about indiscretions but said some buyers weren't agreeing to the terms set out on the driveto13.com website." He said, "There are a number of checks and balances between now and the seat allocation process. People can be assured if they don't follow the proper steps, we will cancel the transaction." For every terminated transaction, "people at the top of a waiting list for tickets, which sold out on Saturday, will be contacted about buying the ducats." Winnipeg Police Service spokesperson Const. Jason Michalyshen said that he "wasn't aware of any formal complaints about scalping," and he "cautioned people about offering goods or services in exchange for tickets." In addition, Brown said that "transfers aren't allowed during the first year," but if a season-ticket holder with the AHL Manitoba Moose "can't afford NHL tickets and would like to transfer them to another person, True North will bring them both down and walk them through the process" (WINNIPEG FREE PRESS, 6/7). Meanwhile, even though True North sold its entire 13,000 season-ticket inventory, there are "still plenty of options for fans to catch at least a few games." Brown said, "There was an inventory of walk-up tickets taken out of each price point category, so there are tickets available in a majority of price point categories for walk-up." The number of individual game tickets available will vary, anywhere from a "few hundred to up to 1,000," and the "walk-up price looks like it will depend on the opponent." Brown: "We are looking into what's called dynamic pricing" (WINNIPEG SUN, 6/7).

PARTING GIFT: In Winnipeg, Paul Friesen cites a source as saying that True North had to cover the buyout of former Thrashers GM Rick Dudley, "to the tune" of about $1M. Earlier this season, Dudley "signed a four-year contract extension with the Thrashers" at about $800,000 annually, and thus "could have been in line for as much as the entire amount," about $3.2M. But negotiations between Dudley and True North "likely produced the lesser settlement." True North could introduce new GM Kevin Cheveldayoff as early as today, and he "will likely start at a similar salary" to Dudley (WINNIPEG SUN, 6/7).
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