With his return to the ice this week, NHL superstar Sidney Crosby is bringing excitement, buzz and higher resale ticket prices for Pittsburgh Penguins games.
Crosby, 24, out since January 5 with a concussion, came back in spectacular fashion Monday night, November 21. He scored a goal five minutes into his return and added another goal and two assists as his Penguins beat the New York Islanders 5-0 in Pittsburgh.
Ticket prices for that game shot up from an average of $150 on Sunday, November 20, after it was announced Crosby would be back, to $340 Monday afternoon, according to ticket search site TiqIQ.com
StubHub.com public relations manager Joellen Ferrer told TicketNews that the resale marketplace saw six times the demand for tickets for Crosby’s return than a normal Penguins game.
“We continue to see strong demand for the next few games at home and on the road,” Ferrer said. “Based on ticket trends, it’s very apparent that fans are excited, considering his incredible return.”
Crosby was also noticeably excited about his comeback, succinctly telling reporters after the game, “Something I’ve been waiting for a long time.”
Crosby’s return drew 250 press credentials, as many as Penguins’ Stanley Cup Finals games in 2009, and was nationally telecast across Canada by the CBC. The moment was reminiscent of Hall of Famer Mario Lemieux’s return for Pittsburgh after a more than three-year layoff in 2000. Lemieux is now part-owner of the Penguins.
Sid the Kid and the Penguins are in the midst of a three-game Thanksgiving Week homestand. TiqIQ’s average price is $200 for tonight’s November 23 game against the St. Louis Blues at the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh. That jumps to $286 for the November 25 game against the Ottawa Senators.
Ticket search site SeatGeek.com had the Penguins averaging $138 per ticket on the resale market in the week leading up to Crosby’s return. The price was the seventh-highest in the NHL and will no doubt rise as Crosby takes his act on the road to the Bell Centre against the Montreal Canadiens on November 26 (TiqIQ average: $302).
The Penguins will continue on with a November 29 game against the New York Rangersat Madison Square Garden, where the average resale price is $178. The team follows that game with a trip to the Verizon Center for a December 1 contest (TiqIQ average: $211) against the Washington Capitals and Crosby’s Russian rival, Alex Ovechkin.
Crosby’s dazzling return continued his flair for the dramatic in his brief career. His gold medal-winning goal for Canada against the United States at the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver further cemented his status as a Canadian national hero. Another Stanley Cup run to cap this comeback certainly wouldn’t hurt, either.