If you have any doubt that Game 7 is a completely different animal from everything that’s come before it, you only need to look at the Houston Rockets’ ticket pricing to remove it once and for all.
Ticket prices to the Rockets home games jumped significantly for the Western Conference Finals. And they’ve taken another huge leap for Game 7.
Lower bowl corner section seats priced at $350 each face value for Games 1, 2 and 5 of the Western Conference Finals became $550 each face value seats for Monday night’s Game 7 for example. And some people are worried about dynamic ticket pricing for regular season baseball?
Please, that’s quaint by comparison.
Of course, one could argue that the NBA and the Rockets are simply responding to an overwhelming demand for tickets to this winner-take-all Game 7 between the hometown 65-win Rockets an the reigning NBA world champion Golden State Warriors.
The super raised Game 7 ticket prices certainly did not stop them from being snatched up. Within hours of the tickets going on sale Saturday night, only some scattered single tickets seemed to remain based on searches on the Rockets website. And those $550 face value tickets were being offered for $700, $800 and much more a seat on secondary ticket market sites, including the Rockets’ own fan resale marketplace.
The very real chance that Rockets star Chris Paul could be severely limited, or unable to play at all, in this Game 7 does not seem to have reduced the enthusiasm for it at all. Rockets fans believe and they’re putting their hard-earned money behind those beliefs.
Houston billionaire (and first-year) Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta seems determined to make sure the fans paying these sky rocketed prices have a good time. There is now a small army of workers spread throughout the arena holding up “How May I Help You?” placards, something rarely seen under former owner Leslie Alexander.
Customer service is clearly being emphasized.
The Real NBA Finals Game?
This Rockets-Warriors finale is priced like it is an NBA Finals game. Then again, a sophisticated basketball fan could argue that it is the NBA Finals game.
Whichever team emerges from this Game 7 will be a huge favorite in the NBA Finals. In fact, it’s no great stretch to argue that this one game will determine the 2018 NBA Champion.
With LeBron James having pushed an underwhelming Cleveland Cavaliers team through a flawed Eastern Conference almost on the force of his sheer will, the title could very well be largely decided on the Toyota Center’s floor Monday night.
By the sky-high market standards of professional sports today, one could even argue that this Warriors-Rockets Game 7 is semi “reasonable.” As of Monday morning, you could final 400 level upper bowl seats for this Game 7 at Toyota Center for $249 (minus the added on resale fees) on the team’s officially sanctioned Flash Seats secondary market site.
In contrast, just getting into the Celtics-Cavaliers Game 7 in Boston Sunday night would have set you back $750 per ticket on the resale market. And that’s for an upper level, super distant view. Of course, Celtics-Cavs also turned out to be a largely horribly played game in which neither team cracked 90 points.
That is not likely to be an issue in this Warriors-Rockets, winner-moves-on Game 7.
All Game Sevens are not created equal. But they are all apparently going to cost you plenty more money.