Sadly, the Philadelphia Flyers’ Stanley Cup hopes were dashed into the boards last night by the New Jersey Devils. But season ticket holders still have something to get riled up about, as they try to call team owners Comcast Spectacor for legal high-sticking.
See, this past season, the NHL’s annual, outdoor Winter Classic game was held here in Philadelphia at the greatest baseball stadium on Earth, Citizens Bank Park.
But when season ticket holders got their passes last fall, that game — which in spite of all the media hype still just counted as a regular season home game for the Flyers — was missing. In its place was a mock ticket for the Winter Classic, along with instructions for how to get seats for the outdoor competition.
They weren’t even given the opportunity to simply buy Winter Classic tickets at face value. Instead, they were told they had to purchase a package that included the Dec. 1 alumni exhibition game and tickets to see the AHL Phantoms play on Jan. 6. Oh — it also included a $41 processing fee per ticket.
In total, that came out to $394/ticket. Pricey even by Flyers standards.
One man has already successfully sued in small claims court, where he was awarded $1,364 for his troubles.
Now, more season ticket holders are combining to form a class-action suit that could end up costing Comcast millions of dollars if the plaintiffs are successful.
From a statement released by the plaintiff’s attorneys:
Among purchasers of tickets to the Winter Classic, only Flyers full season ticket holders were subject to Comcast Spectacor’s conditions that they buy tickets to the exhibition and minor league games. The class action lawsuit was filed because full season ticket holders were entitled to the Winter Classic ticket as part of their agreement with Comcast Spectacor, and should not have been required to repurchase the ticket or to pay for any additional tickets or charges. The Complaint includes claims for breach of contract and violations of New Jersey’s Consumer Fraud Act.
Comcast responds to the suit, which it calls “frivolous”:
Following the [NHL's] selection, all season ticket holders were given an appropriate refund and were given the additional opportunity to purchase a Winter Classic ticket package. It’s a shame that a disgruntled few have seized upon the class-action lawsuit to attempt to profit from what was overwhelmingly considered by those who attended the Winter Classic, and the other games, to be an extraordinary experience.
And yet Comcast has decided not to appeal the small claims judgment “for strategic reasons.”
Why Philadelphia fans are suing Flyers over Winter Classic ticket policy [Yahoo]
Fans file class-action suit against Flyers [Philadelphia Daily News]
Thanks to Josh for the tip!