Real Laker Fans

17 Jun

Ray: The subject of today’s Los Angeles Lakers fans is something that I feel compelled to address. The reason being is because I believe that the true Laker fans are being misrepresented by what is seen on television.

Everytime you watch a Laker game on television, you are essentially watching a hybrid of a basketball game and a “red-carpet” event. Your favorite movie star, tv star, singer, dancer, politician, ect. has frequented the coveted court side seating area at the Staples Center at some point during their career. It has become a necessary PR boost when an actor has a new film coming out, or when a singer is promoting a new album. I must admit, sometimes it’s nice seeing our beloved celebrities outside of their element.

But now, fans of the Los Angeles Lakers have a big obstacle to overcome. That is, the Staples Center is full of fake fans that extend far beyond courtside and go high into the luxury boxes. When I was a kid (I can’t believe I just said that), it was possible for my uncles and I to go to a Laker game at the Great Western Forum in Inglewood and cheer our hearts out. I should say, it was affordable back then. Today, you practically have to take a second mortgage in order to buy Laker tickets.

What we’re left with is a crowd full of corporate parties and wannabe celebrities who are all looking to see and be seen. Laker games have become fashion shows and a great way to flash how good the economy has been to you. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not mad at the wealthy, rich, or celebrities that populate Los Angeles. But I am very upset that real fans who have an undying love for the game have been priced out of the Staples Center and are reduced to following their team on radio and television. I don’t think that’s fair.

In fact, the only time real Laker fans can afford to watch their favorite team at the Staples Center is when the Lakers aren’t even there! And now they’re even taking that away because of this:

As of now, lower level tickets run anywhere from 200-$2,000. Courtside ticket’s can fetch as much as $30,000 or more depending on the occassion. In fact, the Staples Center General Manager Lee Zeidman said, “I’ve seen nothing like this in the nine years since we’ve opened,” after news broke that two courtside tickets to see the Lakers play Boston in the 2008 Finals sold for $112,000!

Being a fan of capitalism, I find it hard to suggest that the Laker organization should charge less for their tickets. But being a citizen in a city dominated by democratic policies, I have an idea!

Ray’s Idea of How Real Laker Fans Can Attend Laker Games:

When new luxury housing developments are developed in downtown LA, the owners are forced to leave a small percentage of the units available to those who qualify for “low-income” housing according to the State of California. Soooooo, if the Lakers use tax-payer money to subsidize any costs associated with the operation of the organization, than why not allow “low-income” Los Angelinos to purchase lower-level tickets at an affordable price? Something like $50 would be perfect.

By doing so, national television cameras will show real fans actually cheering the Lakers instead of text messaging their agents to find out if they’re being seen on tv. The Laker organization will also be championed amongst the city’s working class. And maybe real fans like myself will feel appreciated instead of feeling like second class citizens who can’t afford to cheer their favorite team in person.

Ray’s Note: Check here for ESPN’s David Aldrige’s explanation of NBA ticket prices.

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3 Responses to “Real Laker Fans”

  1. Mike June 17, 2008 at 6:55 pm #

    Celts in 6. Ray Allen is MVP. Doc Rivers is Coach of the Year. Kobe changes his tampon brand.

  2. Amanda June 21, 2008 at 4:46 pm #

    Yea the finals did have a lot of celebrity fans. That’s going to be the only audience at season’s games with these gas prices. They’re ridiculous, and since they aren’t going to decrease anytime soon you might as well get something out of it right? With gas becoming more and more expensive, Jack wants to help you fill your stomach. Bring any gas receipt to Jack in the Box next Thursday, June 26th, and get two free tacos. You know you love those tacos, don’t deny it.-the crispy goodness with the melted cheese, hot sauce, and crisp lettuce on the inside. No gimmicks, no hidden fees, no purchase necessary-just two free tacos. Don’t believe me?

    Check out:
    http://jackinthebox.com/twofreetacosday/index.php?Campaign=MW-TFT-B

    And don’t keep it a secret…let all of your friends know if they like taaaaacos!

  3. tom June 21, 2008 at 4:53 pm #

    Yea the finals did have a lot of celebrity fans. That’s going to be the only audience at season’s games with these gas prices. They’re ridiculous, and since they aren’t going to decrease anytime soon you might as well get something out of it right? With gas becoming more and more expensive, Jack wants to help you fill your stomach. Bring any gas receipt to Jack in the Box next Thursday, June 26th, and get two free tacos. You know you love those tacos, don’t deny it.-the crispy goodness with the melted cheese, hot sauce, and crisp lettuce on the inside. No gimmicks, no hidden fees, no purchase necessary-just two free tacos. Don’t believe me?

    Check out:
    http://jackinthebox.com/twofreetacosday/index.php?Campaign=MW-TFT-B

    And don’t keep it a secret…let all of your friends know if they like taaaaacos

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