Six years ago, Daniel Craig became the new blond Bond, Taylor Hicks won American Idol, and Billboard’s Top Song of 2006 was none other than Daniel Powter’s “Bad Day.” It also marks the year that the Clippers were last relevant in Tinseltown, when they were the surprise 6th seed in the NBA playoffs after a nine-year draught. They upset the Denver Nuggets in five games, but lost a 7-game set to the Suns in the Conference Semifinals.
Yesterday, the Clippers locked up a spot in the NBA playoffs and are battling with their pretty sister for the third-seed in the West (quick disclaimer: I’m a NorCal girl and have always despised all things SoCal — Lakers, Dodgers, even the city itself. Except the Clippers were never relevant enough to fall into that bucket, so now I’ve started to grow a soft spot for the red-headed/red-jersey step-child…). If the playoffs ended today, the Clippers would take on the Grizzlies and the Lakers would face the Nuggets. I’m personally hoping the Clippers come out on top of the Lakers, so that we can see a 2006 rematch.
In that same vein of the Clippers beating out the Lakers, we’ve seen Clippers sales crush that of the Lakers this year on StubHub for the first time EVER in company history. Not terribly surprising, but still noteworthy and the numbers back it up:
* This season, fans have purchased 2x more Clippers tickets (over 185k tickets so far) than Lakers tickets
* Tracking back: Fans have purchased 3x more Clippers tickets than last season and 5x more than the 2009-10 season.
* And compared to the rest of the league — only Knicks ticket sales (in terms of tickets purchased) trump Clippers sales, but this doesn’t consider market size or per capita
Quick sidenote: In pulling this info, I came across a gem — any guesses who the #3 team is for the this season, in terms of the number of tickets purchased? The NETS. Yes, the Nets. But here’s the kicker; the average price is 2x less expensive than the Clippers and 5x less expensive than the Knicks. So bottom line? Nets tickets are dirt cheap, but fans are buying a lot of them. And for those of you that have been tracking our trends know that Nets tickets have been notoriously in the 1 cent to $1 range.
Wrapping this up, I also wanted to take a quick trip back to 2006 from a StubHub and ticketing vantage point. Crazy enough, I started at StubHub six years ago (4 days away from my official six-year mark) and I remember how different and somewhat irrelevant this space was. “Interactive maps” were the hottest thing and people didn’t really understand or trust the secondary market. Six years later, we’ve gone a long way, but still have a long road ahead.