As I mentioned in this story last night, there are still tickets available for the Memorial Cup, which gets going on Friday in Mississauga.
Looking at the prices of tickets, one has to ask if that might be why.
Junior hockey has moved in many communities to more and more of an expensive night out in many communities compared to what it was 10 years ago, but the Memorial Cup this year sets a new bar, with individual game tickets at between $72 and $130 (for next Sunday's final).
The Hockey News' Ken Campbell offered this rant on the subject earlier this week:
"Somewhere along the line, the people who organized this year's Memorial Cup forgot it's junior hockey they're selling. History tells us that of the approximately 80 players who will be playing for the four teams in the tournament, somewhere between a dozen and 15 of them will enter our consciousness later as full-time NHL players. But that hasn't stopped the OHL and the local organizers from trying to grab all the cash they can from people they most certainly have taken for suckers.
"Simply put, tickets to the Memorial Cup are just too damned expensive for the product on display."
Junior hockey is often a tough sell at any price in the Greater Toronto Area, and many of the Mississauga St. Michaels Majors playoff games were half full this season.
And those games cost significantly less.
The No. 1 complaint I've heard from junior hockey fans heading into this tournament has been the prices, but is a $70 to $130 ticket really the new reality for junior hockey?
In a league where you can buy a season ticket for many teams for between $300 to $450?