With the Leafs:
—well into their fifth decade of incompetence,
—on a winless streak to start the season that has them at the bottom of the standings,
—demonstrating that whoever occupies the position of GM is instantly enveloped in a haze of buffoonery and shortsightedness,
and most importantly, with the arrogance of ownership that
—truly doesn't give a damn,
—has the shameless, insidious gall to maintain the highest ticket prices in the league by a wide margin,
—raised ticket prices once again this year in the face of a long rebuild,
—and devotes more energy to keeping other teams out of "their territory" than actually trying to put together a winning team,
Leafs ticket holders may finally be waking up to the absurdity.
This Toronto Star article gives great hope to those who have been for years wishing for a colossal karmic bashing for the individuals who make up MLSE.
The legendary willingness of Leafs-loving Torontonians to dish out mortgage-payment-like sums to witness a perennial loser may have reached its breaking point.
Tickets to Maple Leafs games are being sold for unprecedented low prices on the open market – in what ticket brokers and resellers say is an early sign of a backlash against the club's league-topping ticket prices and basement-dwelling performance.
Sure, it's nothing that a two game winning streak won't solve. And of course, the seats are still full and the falling resale value of tickets doesn't have much of an effect on MLSE. (Though it would be interesting to find out if the Leafs get a cut from ticket brokers. Regardless, guaranteed they fret and fume about finding ways to get their mitts on some of the profits that scalpers make.)
The great thing about pressure is that those on whom it is exerted simply can't resist its effect. But in a situation where the possibilities for exerting pressure are almost non-existent, it can create nastiness, stagnation, and a lack of incentive to improve. Insatiable demand, and a loyal, hockey-mad fan base (like the shirt of the Leafs fan pictured in the article says, "still loyal, just upset") has, for years, sent the message to MLSE that fan fealty is unconditional.
So the news that the rabid devotion may be leveling off is a sign of hope. Imagine the support the Leafs would generate if they offered up a good will gesture like dropping ticket prices.
Genetic Manipulators from the Stars
Ironically, for those of us who aren't Leafs fans, but follow the team for the sheer social experiment/entertainment value, interest may be rising instead of falling.
Maybe the genetic manipulators from the stars who control the Leafs are finally sending the whole circus careening off in a new direction.
As for the current losing streak that the Leafs are on, the odds of breaking it inevitably increase as the schedule advances. On the other hand, no team wants to be the one to give up the first win of the season to the Leafs. The game against the New York Rangers on Saturday, October 17th at the ACC should be a good one. A blowout against the Leafs or a loss coupled with an obvious lack of effort, and the fan rage will ratchet up once again.