I have an idea and it may be stupid, so I hesitate even posting it.
Since the season has ended, it has been a little boring and has lead to thinking about the Sounders in other ways. Sometimes I like to think outside of the box.
We have all heard the saying that “It is better to be quiet and be thought a fool, than to opens one’s mouth and remove all doubt.” Well, here is my chance at being an idiot. Of course, you all may think that I am an idiot already, so this may just reinforce the notion. Oh well, I just hope that you all have short memories.
OK, here it is and it is related to the second point in Sounder-at-Heart’s post : attendance.
But first, this idea actually takes care of another thing that bothers me about the stadium as well – Pat Onstad. No opposing player should be prominently displayed at the stadium. Onstad showed himself to be a jerk and I don’t want to see his face. Yes, I know the Sounders must have spent some money on the tarps, but he really needs to be taken down.
So, what replaces him? When the players do interviews, they usually stand in front of a wall that is a combination of the X-Box logo and the Sounders logo. So replacing him with this just gives the team more advertising.
Now, the current 35,500 capacity is an artificial attendance cap because we all know the stadium actually holds over 60,000. The Sounders ownership wants to cap attendance in order to keep the tickets scarce, which they hope will create demand.
My idea is based on a moving cap. If you look at a picture of the stadium, you can see vertical aisles on the 300 level that separate each section.
So, the Sounders set the initial cap of say 35,500. In my scenario, the Sounders would also set an artificial cap date that could be two weeks, three weeks, a month, five weeks, six weeks, etc., before a game. This cap date would be a date that is set where another section is not automatically opened.
For example, if the cap date is one month before a game and the attendance cap of 35,500 seats sold is reached and the game is still two months away, a designated section (likely at midfield) is automatically opened. If it is still over a month before the game and that section sells out, the section next to it is automatically opened and if that sells out and it is still over a month, the next section is opened and so on in a predetermined order.
Once it reaches the cutoff date of a month before a game, then the section that is currently being sold is the last section. This still gives the ticket office a month to sell out the section (and therefore, the stadium) and still creates enough of a demand that any person cannot just walkup on game day and be guaranteed a ticket.
Now, the reason that I said put the X-Box and Sounders logo on the tarps for the 300 level is that they can be made without disrupting the integrity of each logo. You cannot pull out Onstad’s midsection and have his picture look natural, but you could pull out any one logo if it is made to fit in a section.
I know that the front office likes the consecutive sellout streak, and this does not necessary stop that. But, what I think is more impressive than the sellout streak is being in the top 50 in world attendance. The higher the Sounders are on the list, the more impressive it is.
Ok, so there is my idea. Thoughts anyone?