ECHL Gwinnett hoping for "bump" after relocation of NHL Atlanta

Discussion in 'Fugu's Business of Hockey Forum' started by LadyStanley, Jun 1, 2011.

  1. Sports Enthusiast

    Sports Enthusiast Not Here To Be Liked

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    It depends....Gwinnett has probably the biggest sized arena in the ECHL, they get like what...5,000 a game or something has been the average? Thats still under 50% capacity. It's just a big enough bulding at face value to help hide that fact. I don't think Gwinnett does as well as some people think.
     
  2. nhlfan79

    nhlfan79 Registered User

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    I don't understand your point. They play in a larger building, but to a lower percentage of capacity, and you're holding that against them? The fact is, they've been among the top attended teams every year since they began, all while operating in the shadows of the Thrashers.
     
  3. btn

    btn Gone Hollywood

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    What he meant to say is they should build a 4k seat arena and sell it out every night, then they might get some respect around here.

    A 4,000 sellout is better than a 5,000 attendance game in a 10,000 seat arena. Looks better on TV.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2011
  4. Sports Enthusiast

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    This, i'm not knocking the attendance, as it is what it is. But no question after the novelty wheres off is the building too big. If it was even 7 or 8k that wouldn't be too bad. On Saturday they had some 5700, pretty good it would beat out most teams, with that said about half the seats were full(and one should not if you follow the minors long enough)the number doesn't necessarily reflect butts in the seats as it's generally less, either teams mess with attendance or some people are no shows(season ticket holders one would assume) I'm no financing guru but if you have an 11k seat arena or so and over time you ave the place half so(or less)on most nights wouldn't you be losing some nice figures. I'm sure Gwinnett gets some decent concerts for the arenas size though, i'm just not sure a AA team not named Fort Wayne needs an arena that big. Ontario has like a 9k seater(or something like that)and LED the league in attendance last season and LOST money(I couldn't explain that one to you if I tried)
     
  5. GreenHornet

    GreenHornet Registered User

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    Keep in mind, the Gwinnett Arena was built with more than just ECHL hockey in mind, which is why it has 11,000 seats.
     
  6. Sports Enthusiast

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    Who else plays there? What else was in mind? This would be okay but aren't they the primary tenant? Which makes it look like it was built for them. Though one would assume maybe not, they play a fair amount of weeknight home games
     
  7. Big McLargehuge

    Big McLargehuge Let's Go Exploring

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    Arenas get more use than just sporting events...

    In the next few weeks the Gwinnett Center has numerous Georgia Tech basketball events, a Reba concert, the ballet, a Paul Simon concert, it hosted a Foo Fighters concert last night...in the month of November the arena will be in use 18 of 30 days, and only 6 of them are for Gladiators games. Needless to say Paul Simon and the Foo Fighters aren't playing in a 4,000 seat suburban arena.
     
  8. AdmiralsFan24

    AdmiralsFan24 Registered User

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    Concerts and shows that you wouldn't get with a 4,000 seat arena, the AFL Force play there and have averaged 8,096 fans in the six years they've played there.
     
  9. kdb209

    kdb209 Registered User

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    From the Gwinnett Center Event calendar - ignoring the separate Convention Center and Performing Arts Center:

    http://www.gwinnettcenter.com/allevents.0.html

    Note that Georgia Tech is playing in Gwinnett for a year while the on campus Alexander Memorial Coliseum is being renovated.
     
  10. Johnny8242

    Johnny8242 Registered User

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    I didn't know how to react to the person who said the ECHL is boring...


    I'm a big ECHL Fan. I find it to be a lot more exciting than the NHL is usually. Tons of effort every night unlike some of the NHL Teams.
     
  11. nhlfan79

    nhlfan79 Registered User

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    I don't get this at all. 5,000 tickets sold is more than 4,000 tickets sold, so who cares how full the building is as a percentage basis? Plus, you also have the built-in advantage of having the capacity for the occasional crowd of 10,000 once or twice a season. Also, 5,000 people tend to eat more than 4,000 do. Same for souvenirs, etc.

    So far as I know, the ECHL is not carried on TV, so who cares what the barn looks like?
     
  12. HansH

    HansH Unwelcome Spectre

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    When I was writing the Attendo-Meter column for another website, I constantly got people berating me for ranking the teams on average attendance instead of on capacity -- mostly people from markets who were on the lower end of attendance and wanting to make themselves feel better about their market.

    The "real" answer is actually probably somewhere between the announced attendance figures and the capacity figures -- teams can (and in many instances have shown themselves willing to) play games with either of those numbers, by giving away tickets, by curtaining off areas of the arena, etc etc. The "capacity only" people have _some_ argument that 5,000 in a 10,000-seat arena might not make as much profit for the owner as a sold-out 4,100-seat arena... ticket prices differ, leases differ (that's the BIG variant there), and so on. But the "average attendance only" people don't have the full answer either -- while more people _is_ more people, again, it doesn't always mean more profit (or less loss).

    Bigger arenas usually cost more to lease and run... BUT that cost is NOT a linear factor of capacity -- and even two facilities with identical capacity would likely have different costs and profitability models. So, while average attendance isn't a perfect indication of health, it's much less flawed and much closer to objective than "capacity". The fallacy of the "capacity only" argument is demonstrated by the now-defunct CHL Austin Ice Bats. Before they folded, they played their final two seasons in a rec-rink with a capacity of 1,900 -- and sold out every game of each of those two seasons. Can you really tell me that they did better than the AHL Hershey Bears did that season, because the Bears drew 8,770 that same year, but "only" filled 85% or so of capacity?

    The "real" answer that most people would actually be looking for is the bottom line - does the team lose or make money, and how much, each season. However, those numbers are in most cases never actually released, or only manipulated numbers are released in order to negotiate in public when it comes to leases, etc. So, between average and capacity on attendance, I'll still come down on the imperfect, but still less flawed, averages.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2011
  13. Sports Enthusiast

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    False. Reading and Wheeling(Yeah, Wheeling the franchise all but dead)have their road games on local TV.
     
  14. Sports Enthusiast

    Sports Enthusiast Not Here To Be Liked

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    How many do you really think will come watch GT Basketball? Unless it's Duke/UNC?

    As you said, small point as it's only for a year
     
  15. Sports Enthusiast

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    Quite fine with that, one of em is country and the other is ancient.
     
  16. Sports Enthusiast

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    Didn't the original Force play @ the Phillips Arena? We will see how long "this AFL" lasts.
     
  17. kdb209

    kdb209 Registered User

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    The 'Jackets drew an avg of 6,095/gm last season, down from 7,979 in '09-'10. The Alexander Memorial Coliseum holds 9,190.

    But, as you said, it's not really releveant to the Gwinnett Center capacity.

    Note that it does not appear that the Gwinnett Center was built for the ECHL Gladiators. It was built as a multi purpose arena for concerts & shows and after it was planned and broke ground (in 2001) the ECHL Mobile Mysticks (which had suspended operations in 2002) announced that they would move to the Gwinnett Center when it opened (in 2003).
     
  18. Bongo

    Bongo Registered User

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    Looks like those dung beetles at ASG are losing more revenue. How long has Ringling Brothers been held at Gwinnett? Paul Simon is quite a coup as well.
     
  19. thisismikea

    thisismikea Registered User

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    They played only two seasons at Phillips I believe.

    The others were in Gwinnett.
     
  20. HansH

    HansH Unwelcome Spectre

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    Don't need to wait till May. The Glads played their last home game of the season a week ago.

    Gate number comparison:
    2011-12 season (36 dates): 185,794
    2010-11 season (36 dates): 184,596

    For a TOTAL increase of 1,198 fans over 36 games... 33.3 fans per game, an increase of six-tenths of one percent. This despite a season where the Thrashers left AND the Glads are leading the Eastern Conference.

    Looks like I knew what I was talking about, after all, funny thing.
     
  21. nhlfan79

    nhlfan79 Registered User

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    But what's your point? That the loss of an NHL team would cause a spike at the Glads? They're two entirely different hockey products and, when both teams were still here, catered to different demographics entirely. It's unremarkable to say that double-A hockey in the far northern suburbs is a niche product, with or without an NHL franchise in the city. The Glads have their core audience and serve their local community well, but most people in Atlanta aren't going to drive 1.5 to 2 hours in traffic on I-85 (or, new for this season(!), pay a $5 per way toll) to pay to see low-level minor league hockey with players who have as much chance of cracking the NHL as I do just because the Thrashers are gone.

    This fact is not limited to hockey. Even the Gwinnett Braves, the Atlanta Braves' triple-A affiliate is having a hard time drawing fans. Sports fans in Atlanta love college sports first and foremost, then the major league pro teams. That leaves little attention left for the fringe sports, especially in a down economy.
     
  22. IU Hawks fan

    IU Hawks fan They call me IU

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    You should go back to page 1 and reread. He clearly says that it WOULDN'T create any kind of dramatic increase.
     
  23. nhlfan79

    nhlfan79 Registered User

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    I did re-read his original comment. My point is that his prediction that the Glads would not see a substantial increase in attendance was not much of a stretch.

    NB: The Glads attendance remains solidly in the top 5 in the entire league, regardless of any negligable attendance bump.
     
  24. HansH

    HansH Unwelcome Spectre

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    I was replying to ThrasherMinion's implication that the removal of the Thrashers would lead to a huge bump in Glads attendance -- I'm in agreement with your points, I was making those same points in my discussion with TM, that's all.
     
  25. NSHPreds1835

    NSHPreds1835 Glads/Preds

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    I thought the Gladiators would have averaged more this season but perhaps since the move of the Thrashers was so sudden and left a bitter taste it is possible some decided to boycott hockey all together. The year of the NHL lockout the Gladiators did see an increase in attendance and averaged 6,045 a game. I say lets see what happens next season when it will have been over year since the move of the Thrashers and perhaps the Gladiators will be coming off of a Kelly Cup Championship season.
     

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