The Kings Ticket Sales Blog
Giving Thanks for Kings Fans

Happy Thanksgiving! I was reflecting on our BIG win last night vs. our Southern California neighbor Lakers. There’s nothing better than a well-earned Beat LA chant! How do we do it?

It really does seem like our Kings pull off frequent big wins against the big teams. Even Coach mentioned as much last night. I wondered if that’s all it was.  Do they just rise to the occasion of the bigger challenge? Or, was it something more?

While my wife was diligently preparing our vegan Thanksgiving for 2 (it’s actually pretty yummy!), I decided to look into it. I had a hypothesis that it was more than just the marquee match up against a top team. In the three years I’ve been with the Kings, I felt like our best performances had been in front of the biggest crowds, which weren’t always just against the biggest teams. Was there something infections about our packed building that helped carry a young team with a little extra energy and swagger? Could it really be that the right crowd could make an impact on a Kings win? We’ve always felt it to be true, but how substantiated is it?

I started with an analysis of the last three years beginning in the 2009-10 season, where I think the core of this young team began to develop. What I found put a big smile on my face.

Since the 2009-10 season, the Kings have played in 51 home games with crowds of 14,000 or better.  In those games, they have a win percentage of .412, marginally better than the win percentage of .380 in the games with attendance of less than 14,000.  OK, not bad.

Here’s where it gets interesting. Look at what happens as the crowds get progressively larger:

There seems to be a clear correlation to wins as attendance increases.

As the Kings tipped-off to 12 home crowds of 17,000+ over the last 3 years, they have won an astounding 67% of those games!  It should also be noted, that during those 12 games, 2 of the 4 losses came in overtime (Back to Back heart-breakers vs. LeBron and Kobe during Christmas week of 2009).  Meaning the Kings were ahead or tied at the end of regulation in 10 out of these 12 games - 83% of the time! Unbelievable.

Photo Credit: Rocky Widner/NBAE/Getty Images

But, maybe you’re thinking that this IS just a case of the Kings playing up to the level of the best competition and the crowd size is just a fortunate circumstance.  After all, the big crowds come from big time opponents, right? Not so fast!

Of these 8 out of 12 games the Kings won with capacity crowds of 17,000+, their opponents had a combined year-end winning percentage of .487.  Yes, we do beat more of the big teams than we typically do in front of a stuffed building and these wins included David over Goliath against the Lakers, Thunder & Celtics, but the Kings handled the majority of their business against teams coming in with less hype. 

Our incredible fans have packed the house and represented for more than just the biggest opponents and our team has fed off of that! The point is, it appears the cause of the higher quality play may, in fact, be the large crowd more than the high caliber of the opponent. We play great teams and not-so-great teams equally better with a King-sized crowd.

The .667 winning percentage with capacity crowds is quite a contrast from our overall home winning percentage over the last 3 years of .393 vs. a similar caliber of cumulative opponents.

The tipping point of winning ball seems to hit around the 16,000 fans mark.  In these games, playing teams with a .640 year-end winning percentage on average, we’ve pulled out over 50% of those victories.  Again, we’re not just beating the best teams in this case. In fact, we’re doing more winning against lower performing opponents, but at a much better rate than we typically do with smaller crowds.

Here’s a look at the general data:

It’s clear that there’s some mysterious force at play inside Sleep Train Arena and I like it. If you’ve been in the seats for any of these games, you probably know what I’m talking about. The more 6th men you see standing at your side, the more inspired you feel to yell, stomp and provide our guys with a boost of hometown swagger. When the crowd is near capacity, the energy is exponential.

I think what I’m really thankful for is that we all make a difference in some way. To me, that’s the fun of working in professional sports. Not having the hops or 3-point range to get onto the actual court, I hope that we impact the outcome in some other positive way. As a fan, it’s the same for me. I believe that my voice and my passion make a difference when I’m in the stands.

We’ve heard it often from all of our guys in their post-game quotes or on their Twitter feeds - after so many of these games Tyreke, Marcus, JT, DeMarcus have all glowed about the energy they pull from the crowd. I’ve heard it behind the scenes. When they know a “Blackout” night is coming or they catch wind of big early attendance numbers, they get fired up. These guys feel your presence!

Looking at this data and being there to feel the contagious energy of our big crowd last night and over the last 3 years leaves me with no doubt that we all make a real impact on this team. We show up to work at the arena or we show up to cheer because we’re proud of our guys, and our community and we share their wins and losses.  The elation, the sadness, the sweat and the tears.  It’s all ours together.

The great sports statistician Bill James developed a formula and coined the term “Win Shares” for each player’s contribution towards a win. When the house is packed, Sacramento fans deserve credit for “win shares” and should feel pride and take ownership in sharing each win.

If you haven’t had a chance to get out to one of the BIG crowd games recently, we hope you can join us soon.  It really is an amazing value for your entertainment dollar and is an awesome place to build lasting memories.

To make it easier for you, we’re launching our new Holiday Pack tonight. For as little as $49, you can get 3 tickets to Kings games that feature a few of those expected BIG crowds (Boston & Miami to name a few), plus we’re throwing in a free Squaw Valley/Alpine Meadows lift ticket (valued at $98). If you buy on Black Friday, we’re even adding a complimentary 4th game vs. Utah this Saturday on 11/24! I know it sounds too good to be true, but it’s for real. It’s really the best ticket deal I’ve ever seen.

We want you in the building. We want you to cheer our team to a win. You can grab your Holiday Pack HERE starting at midnight on Black Friday.  Happy Thanksgiving everyone and Go Kings!

The Ticket Relationship

I’m constantly reminded as a professional sports team, how broad our reach really is. It goes so much further than the wins and losses.  There’s a strong sense of belonging and connection for our fans.  There’s no more evidince of that than with our Season Ticket Holders.

These, many of our most loyal fans, are the foundation of what makes a live Kings game so special.  Having thousands who know the intricate traditions, repeated for 27 years, of when to sit, stand, cheer or crescendo the noise makes it feel like you’re watching an elegantly orchestrated play. For these fans, attending a game is a ritual.  It’s something they do with family and together we’re all one large extended family.

It’s that sense of extended family that we spend hours every week examining in our ticket office.  If you’ve ever been to a family reunion or even just tried to figure out where your family is going to eat on a Saturday night, you’ve probably experienced the difficulties in pleasing everyone.  Fortunately, for us, we don’t have to take everyone to the same resturant.

To navigate this delicate dance with our Season Ticket Holders, our family, we created Cap City Kingdom.  This unique program has allowed our Season Ticket Holders to select how involved they want to be, at their own pace.  They can earn points to spend on items of their specific choice, whether it be food and beverage, Kings merchandise, extra tickets, parking and more. Or they can choose to take advantage of VIP access.

Being a part of our family allows them to take part in the special experiences that extend beyond the game on the court.  They can choose the ones that make the most sense for them.  Recently, we’ve invited our thousands of Season Ticket Holders to events like:

  • Family Day in Old Sac on the River (pics with Thornton, Outlaw, Cousins)
  • Blues Traveler concert & pre-party (pics with Mitch Richmond, Scot Pollard, Tyreke and Isaiah)
  • BBQ on the Lawn at the River Cats game (Coach Smart meet/greet)
  • Summer League Watch Party ($10 free food/beverage vouchers at Bisla’s)
  • Private screening of the Batman Dark Knight Movie and Dark Night Marathon on Thursday night (50% savings on tickets)

Each event draws a different group.  The key is that we frequently offer plenty of options.  We want to be the hub for access to the coolest entertainment in Sacramento. No one should feel like if an event doesn’t fit their needs that they’ve missed the only opportunity to interact with our family or to catch a unique experience.

 

Each experience offered is designed to strengthen our bond.  We expect our relationship with our Season Ticket Holders to be a long term investment and one that we have to continue to work at.  So, we want to know what makes them tick.  We work to find out likes, dislikes, hobbies and hopes.  Every special event we offer is customized around this feedback.  We learned that many of our Season Ticket Holders were local business owners, so we created the Kings Business Advantage.  We know that VIP interaction with players and coaches is high on most everyone’s list, so we make them available at our events to meet and greet as part of our family.

Most think that this is the “off-season” for our staff. In reality, it’s just as busy as when we we’re playing games.  We’re out in the community and on the phones every day getting to know you better. By the time the season’s actually here, we want our family to be primed and ready to bring their best to the stands.

The better we can get to know each other in the “off-season”, the more involved and engaged we’ll all be when it counts on the court.  We know that our fans, and particularly our Season Ticket Holders, make a difference at home and we want to help set the stage for that effort to be as thunderous as possible. So, thanks for those of you who continue to contribute to this effort and if you’re not yet a Season Ticket Holder, we’d love to start building a new relationship with you today.

Thank You Kings Fans!

Welcome to our interactive Kings Ticket blog.

 

We’ve received so much valuable feedback from fans over the years, we want to use this platform as a way to ensure all fans are as up-to-date as possible about everything Kings, and we are as educated as possible about your ticket experience!

 

Recent fan feedback has led to many enhancements, like new theme nights, the popular Cap City Kingdom Season Ticket rewards program, VIP Season Ticket Holder concession lines, increased staffing and much more.

 

We want to continue to improve our communication and service, and believe using this platform as a way to share information and ideas will help inform both fans and the organization.

 

To tip this off, I want to say Thank You. 

 

This has really been an incredible season of support. Fans rallied around this community and team in tremendous fashion, and made a statement with a significant increase in attendance this year; an increase which ranks Top 5 in the NBA! We all had an opportunity to watch our young team add new pieces and grow.

(Photo credit: Oregonlive.com)

 

We saw moments like Marcus Thornton’s game-winner vs. Portland, the emergence of a new starter, who was the the last pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, in Isaiah Thomas and glimpses of a future powerhouse All-Star in DeMarcus Cousins, who showcased his dominance with routine double-doubles.

 

Fans have already stood up and pledged their support for the 2012-13 season in record numbers, and we share our sincerest gratitude. Our Season Ticket Holders are part of the Kings family. Families can go through highs and lows, but in the end, they stick together. We share memories and heartache together. Our bond is steadfast.

 

With an NBA Top 10 Season Ticket Renewal Rate (88%) — the highest for the team in the last 4 years — fans continue to show how much they love Kings basketball! In addition to those who have locked-in their legacy for next season, more than 400 additional fans have already purchased new Kings season tickets for next year. And, groups are coming back at a record pace, as more than 200 deposits have been pledged in the last 10 days.

 

The attendance for our final 4 home games of this season are a testament to the best fans in the NBA, and we’re excited to finish strong against the rival Lakers tonight! With 4 consecutive crowds exceeding 16,000 for the first time in 4 years, we are reminded why this is a tremendous NBA market. It’s clear fans come to games for basketball, but the many unique experiences prove to be a difference-maker, as we saw more than 1,500 fans attend the Kings-Spurs game on April 18th for a memorable Faith & Family Night post-game concert and outstanding support for the popular #IsaiahROY Pack that featured an Isaiah Thomas meet & greet.

 

We’re already looking forward to rolling out more fun next season!

 

Our goal is to provide more options for fans with enhanced theme nights, ticket plans that start near $13.50 per game and more. Your feedback continues to provide us with vital insight. We want to have a plan for every fan! Most importantly, we want to continue to provide an outlet for fans to create lifelong memories.

 

Next year will undoubtedly prove to be packed with excitement, and it starts as soon the NBA Lottery on May 30 and NBA Draft on June 28. We’re looking at a chance to snag another future top-tier talent with an early pick in what many say is the deepest Draft in years. Our young core, chalked full of rising talent with DMC, Tyreke, JT & Jimmer, might just add the final Lottery piece.

 

We hope everyone can be a part of the continued growth of this team, and many unique experiences LIVE next season. If you don’t yet have a season ticket plan, be sure to check out our upcoming Select-a-Seat event on May 9 at 7 p.m. at Power Balance Pavilion. Attendees will have an opportunity to see our newest-available seats, get a personal tour from an arena professional and, with any purchase, shoot a half-court shot for a chance to win a free season ticket! This is your chance to channel Tyreke Evans!!! I hope to see you there and, of course, at every Kings game next season.

 

Thank you for an incredible year!