Jun 10

2024

Price gouging that makes Terry Pegula look good

There's plenty to complain about the Sabres and Bills owner, but not the ticket prices to his Sabres, especially when you compare them with the transplanted hockey team setting up shop in Salt Lake City. That and more recommended reading from Jim Heaney.

If you’re a regular reader of this column, you know I’m not a fan of the way Terry Pegula operates his sports teams. (Personal seat licenses, for staters.) But there is something to be said about how he prices Sabres tickets, although the size of our market probably has a lot more to do with it than his benevolence.

The Arizona Coyotes of the National Hockey League are relocating to Salt Lake City for the coming season and the team last week announced its ticket prices. Let’s compare with Buffalo.

Season tickets in the lower seating bowl for the Sabres  range from $150 to $57 a seat. In Salt Lake City, season tickets down below are going for $290 to $120 a seat and the club seats closest to the ice apparently haven’t been priced yet. Upstairs, season tickets in Buffalo range from $62 to $26 a seat. In Salt Lake City, they’ll cost anywhere from $139 and $44. 

Yikes! 

Adding insult to injury, only 10,000 seats in the Salt Lake arena have unobstructed views. There’s another 6,000 “partial ice view” seats. Those will go for $19 a pop.

Then consider ticket prices to attend the ongoing Stanley Cup finals in Edmonton. The games are sold out, of course, and prices are sky-high in the secondary market. You can’t touch a seat for Game 3 for under $1,400. The asking price for the first row, right behind the net, is a tad under $5,500.

Double yikes!


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The customs workers who question people entering Canada at bridges and airports are poised to slow entry to a crawl if they don’t reach a contract settlement by Wednesday.

The Spectrum, the student paper at the University at Buffalo, reported that an Amherst town  justice tossed the charges against 12 of the 14 demonstrators arrested May 1 during protests against the war in Gaza. The judge cited “insufficient evidence.” Sounds like the cops messed up the paperwork. Or perhaps they didn’t have a sound case to present. Seven students were among those arrested; none face disciplinary action by the university.

New York Focus recently reported on a secret committee of the state Senate that vets bills as the legislative session winds down. One of its reporters tried to crash a meeting last week and got locked out. (Attendees included Sen. Sean Ryan of Buffalo.) 

Senate Deputy Majority Leader Michael Gianaris, who hosted the meeting, lied to the reporter afterwards. Michael Murphy, the $188,000 a year spokesman for Majority Leader Stewart-Cousins, f-bombed and otherwise berated the reporter. 

I’m not sure which is more obscene: Murphy’s language or his salary.

Gov. Kathy Hochul pulled the plug at the 11th hour on a congestion pricing plan that would have charged vehicles entering lower Manhattan during peak hours. The plan would have raised an estimated $1 billion annually to fund improvements to the city’s subway system. Congestion pricing doesn’t affect us here in WNY, but the manner in which Hochul handled the situation is telling.

First, there’s the question of timing: her decision follows campaign contributions from opponents to the plan and she suspended the toll program with just days left in the legislative session, leaving no time to come up with an alternative. There’s also the impact of the loss of funding, which threatens some $15 billion in work


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Up for a deep dive? The Pew Research Center conducted a comprehensive poll to gauge what Americans think about cultural issues and the upcoming elections in November. Among the findings: Democrats and Republicans see things differently – no surprise there – but voters in the same party sometimes disagree, as well

ProPublica reported last week on what appears to be an effort by Donald Trump to effectively bribe potential witnesses in his criminal cases to dummy up. The man is a walking crime scene.

Alabama is keeping inmates in prison in order to farm them out to work for little to no pay. 

You wanna buy Muhammad Ali’s childhood home? It’s for sale. 

Related: Howard Cosell’s epic “Forever Young” commentary during the home stretch of the champ’s victory over Leon Spinks in 1978.


 

Investigative Post

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