Once the new Sixers ownership took over the team, we wrote a post making some suggestions as to how they could improve their product. We talked about many of the bells and whistles off the court and also made some lame Charles Barkley jokes. But Kulp, our voice of reason, summarized the real bottom line thusly:
No matter what attractions are added to the show, people are going to
either love it or hate it, but the one constant is they will go to the
game as long as it is affordable and/or the team is good.
You'd think, right?
Well the team is certainly winning and the ownership did a really nice job lowering ticket prices to make getting into the building quite easy for almost anyone who wants to come enjoy a game. But the fans haven't showed up just yet.
CSN's Ruben Frank writes about the lack of support for the red hot squad. Here are the numbers:
Through five home dates, the 76ers are averaging
13,402 fans per game. That ranks 29th out of 30 NBA teams. Since drawing
19,408 for the home opener, the 76ers have averaged less than 12,000
I have a few theories as to why people aren't showing up just yet. For starters, the games they have played at home weren't against teams that people would come out to see. I'm guessing the simple fact that they played the Pistons, Raptors, Pacers, Kings, and Wizards. I'd bet the casual observer couldn't name two players on any of those teams.
The second part is that it takes time. This *is* a great Sixers basketball team, but we didn't know that three weeks ago before the season tipped off. The buzz is building, but getting to a game, especially with kids, takes a bit of planning.
I think you'll see those numbers Roob cited early steadily rise as the season gets older. It will be interesting to see the kind of numbers teams like the Magic and Heat will bring to the Wells Fargo Center in the coming weeks.
The current attendence numbers are discouraging, but we want to keep telling ourselves that it takes time, that it will eventually be a hot ticket to watch the talented Sixers in South Philly.
We'll close by asking the same question Roob asked: what's keeping you away?