Tuesday, December 02, 2008

It's the economy, stupid

This one is a couple days old now, but Reuters ran a nice little summery article of how the economic mess could impact sports teams, particularly smaller, niche sports.

Think lacrosse, women's sports and, well, hockey (although the article repeats the NHLs favourite lie--that it breaks attendance records every month).

An interesting stat listed is that ticket prices are 38 percent more expensive on average since the beginning of the last recession in March 2001. Even counting inflation, the numbers would be even more extreme if you compared things to the last significant economic downturn in the early '80s.

Although things aren't as bad here in Canada, things aren't good anywhere. As sports fans we should be worried. For the obvious reasons (if NHL teams fail in the US don't expect them to move up here. Expect them to fade away, taking a big chunk out of the league with them), but also for the less obvious ones too (especially locally. You think Canadian Tire is still going to sponsor that 10k if it's bottom line is struggling. Can Joe's Auto Body buy your kid a soccer strip when he has to fire his loyal assistant of 12-years?).

Hopefully it's all hyperbole. But, still...something to think about.

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