With the Toronto Maple Leafs enjoying a four-game winning streak to soften January's winter grip on the Southern Ontario populace, we are here to offer a public service to the team's fans.
Take heart, folks, the belief that no tickets to any Leaf game are ever available to the general public from anyone other than the army of scalpers on the Air Canada Centre's sidewalks is an urban legend. If you are willing to make a few clicks on the Leafs' web site and surrender some information to the team's marketers, then salvation is at hand. But only today (Thursday) and only for a few hours.
If you join the Leafs' Last Minute Club, you will periodically get the chance to buy tickets to upcoming games before the rest of the non-computer savvy unwashed get their grubby mitts on them.
The latest chance is today until 10 p.m. for games from Feb. 10 until the end of the season. But we hope you have better luck than the staff at Leafs Beat. We made three tries - the wildly successful New Jersey Devils on Saturday, the almost-as-bad New York Islanders on Feb. 22 and the maybe-Sidney-less Pittsburgh Penguins on Mar. 2. All we could land were a pair of upper-level greens with restricted views for $109, allegedly all taxes and fees included. If you want to try, start here.
We will give the Leafs credit for not stooping to the odious practice of charging more for some games than others, one that crept into sports a decade or so ago where games against traditional rivals or the league's better teams carry a hefty price increase. No, according to the Leaf web site, tickets for the awful Devils will sell between $35.50 and $658.50, the same price as those for the Penguins or Montreal Canadiens.
However, those prices also include the $8.50-per-ticket fee charged by those fine folks at Ticketmaster. But don't get me started on that topic …