Archive for June, 2008

The Personal Seat License Has Arrived

Friday, June 27th, 2008

On Thursday, the Giants announced that every single seat in the new stadium, to be ready for the 2010 season, will come with an additional price: a PSL.

To be honest, I have been hoping that PSL’s arrived on the scene with the new stadium. The reason? To basically thin out the droves of people who hold, for example, 6-10 seats as part of their season ticket package, and in some cases, never use some or all of these tickets but rather broker them to others. Those fans will now have to make a choice on how many (if any) tickets to renew under the terms of the PSL. And ultimately this will open up opportunities for those on the ticket wait list.

But as always, you have to careful what you wish for. The Giants have already announced that every upper tier seat will come with a price of $1,000. Lower tier and mezz prices haven’t been released, but it’s quite obvious these will be more expensive (in some cases rumored to be as much as 20K per seat). It’s commonly understood right now that those in the lower/mezz levels will have three options:

  • renew at the going PSL price for their current seat(s)
  • opt to move to the upper level
  • not renew their season tickets.
  • It is also believed that choice to move to the upper level will be based on seniority. Once the upper level is filled, option 2 no longer applies.

    So I have conservatively estimated that 15-20% of current ticket holders will not renew. In a new stadium that will hold about 82,500, I believe that the first 12,000 to 14,000 fans on the wait list will have an opportunity to get season passes. But the question becomes at what price? Those seats will certainly be the highest priced seats in regards to the PSL (and face value of the ticket). So while your number finally comes up, you may not be in a position to afford it.

    The other interesting thing to point out is once the new stadium is full (meaning every PSL is assigned), the wait list as we know it becomes meaningless. If someone decides they are done going to Giant games, they will sell their PSL to the highest bidder in the open market. The first person on the waiting list doesn’t get a crack at it. 

    It also will become increasingly more difficult to get tickets at decent prices outside of the current TicketMaster ticket exhange program. Here’s why. Upper tier fans, possibly owning less seats now, will be more reluctant to sell because they want to go to the game themselves. And if they do sell, the price will be more expensive in an effort to recoup their cost of the PSL. The same thing applies to lower and mezz seat owners, and figure the cost to be even greater considering their outlay for PSL’s.

    Be careful what you wish for. Hoarding of seats will be eliminated. New fans will get an opportunity to become season ticket holders. The only question becomes, at what cost?

    Thank You Mike!

    Thursday, June 19th, 2008

    Michael Strahan has decided to retire after 15 terrific seasons in the NFL, ending a career that will certainly put the defensive end in Canton when he becomes eligible in 2013. I really feel he’s making the right choice, going out a champion and also ending it on his terms. We see so many athletes simply hang on or either get tossed aside due to declining skills. Strahan represents neither of these instances. The man can still play with the best of them, proving it last year at the age of 36. And when he was named captain after missing all of training camp last summer, his leadership and respect in that locker room was held in as high regard as his play.

    Strahan is probably the second best defensive player I have seen on the Giants (Taylor) in my fandom since 1980. What makes Strahan a Hall of Famer is his ability to play the run and the pass. Making it even more unique is the size of Strahan. Whether he was playing at 285 pounds (earlier in his career) or at 245 pounds (like this past year), he was equally effective. Amazing. Strahan just knew how to play the technique at his position, and do it at the highest level.

    The one knock on Strahan, and I always said this, was he didn’t make the big play when the Giants needed it most. There were some bitter collapses during his time (1997 versus Minnesota and 2002 versus San Fran come to mind immediately) when Strahan, or his defense, didn’t come through. Don’t get me wrong, there are always going to be situations where the defense fails, it happens to the best of them. But the Giants never seemed to get that stop when it was needed in big, tight games. 2007 was different. They didn’t fold in Dallas or Green Bay, when they easily could of. Instead they got tougher. And while New England did go the length of the field for a go-ahead score late in Super Bowl XLVII, the offense came to the rescue. And that was so appropriate, because the defense, led by Strahan, played wonderfully on that February evening and deserved every ounce of praise.

    John Mara was unsure about retiring Stra’s number, only because the Giants are “running out” of numbers to use for current players. That’s okay, because no one will confuse #92 with anyone else. It’s Michael Strahan’s number forever.

    Some Final Thoughts…

    Wednesday, June 4th, 2008

    …before I depart to run my summer baseball team, the Roughriders.

     First, I picked up the five DVD set released by NFL Films that everyone has been waiting for: the Giants’ incredible run through the playoffs that includes Week 17’s game versus the then undefeated Pats. It’s the full network broadcasts, with the original announcers (Buck and Aikman for every playoff game). There had been a rumor that Bob Pappa and company from WFAN would be spliced in over the video, but that isn’t the case. The really cool thing: you can watch the Super Bowl with Strahan’s commentary turned on (athough Stra, like any defensive player, harps too much on the offense to just not make a mistake…still, who can get mad at the guy?). The really uncool thing: these games aren’t in HD. I have to admit, I’m spoiled and it’s really a big time blunder by the producers. All these games were broadcast orginally in HD. Talk about going cheap. It’s just not the same. Nonetheless, it will be a long time before I actually sit down and watch the entire set (if ever, as I’ve watched numerous replays already) but if you’re a Giants’ fan this is something you at least have to have in your video collection.

     The Giants got their rings last week, and man, were those things huge! Strahan wanted a “10-table ring” and Tiffany’s certainly delivered. The ceremony kicked off the start of OTA’s to be followed by a “mandatory” mini camp June 11-13. Shockey wasn’t at the ring ceremony and we’ll see what happens at the mini camp. Some minor drama, but really, after what this team has gone through over the last three years, this amounts to small potatoes despite what ESPN or any other outlet can make it out to be.

    Finally, some more kudos to the front office. When the Giants came to David Diehl to rework his contract a few weeks ago to be more in line with a starting left tackle, it sends a message. To everyone. The Giants know they have a young nucleus and keeping it intact is vital to the team’s future success. Look for Chris Snee and Brandon Jacobs to be next on the list.