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Once More Into the Breach...

December 1, 2009, 4:41 PM ET [ Comments]
Paul McCann
Nashville Predators Blogger •Predators Radio Network • RSSArchiveCONTACT
You know the old saying that figures lie and liars figure? Well, David Shoats, you’ve done it again.

In yet another black eye for journalism, Toronto Globe and Mail “journalist” David Shoats has selectively used data to paint an inaccurate and unnecessarily bleak picture of what is going on in Nashville. He shows his desperation to forward his obvious agenda by badly quoting numbers and comparing apples to oranges.

Shoats correctly quotes the Predators average attendance as 13,712 so far this season, but then compares it to the end of season number from last year and says that the team’s attendance “has dropped 1300 fans a game.” He clearly shows a lack of understanding as anyone without an axe to grind, or any hockey knowledge at all knows that many markets' attendance goes up after football season. Nashville is one of those markets.

By the way Mr. Shoats, you may want to check the PAID attendance number… go ahead, I’ll wait…

Yup, that’s right Mr. Shoats… Nashville’s paid attendance number is UP on the same number of games year over year. I guess a smart journalist like you would know that, after all, you do your research, don’t you? It was published in the Nashville Tennessean, a credible news source. Here’s a link.

So there are two possibilities here, either you didn’t know this fact, or chose to ignore it. Either choice doesn’t exactly paint you in a credible light, and shows that you have an agenda, that you won’t expose facts that weaken an already tired argument.

So, let’s look at another attendance related number… Mr. Shoats, you say the Nashville Predators are 27th in league attendance. Looking at the number alone, you are correct. But the ranking doesn’t tell the story as every NHL arena has a different capacity number. It is a better comparison to look at the percent of capacity. A number that only 10 teams are at 100% or better on, by the way... When you look at percent of capacity, Nashville is at the 23 spot, only marginally better, but ahead of markets like Colorado and New York… you know, traditional ones.

So let’s look at another fact, shall we? You claim the Predators had a small loss last year, which was true… until a payout was made from the escrow account from the NHLPA. You know… the one that garnered each NHL team an average of about $7 million? The one that affected Nashville’s “small loss?”

Hmmm, now let’s do some math. A “small loss” plus a sizeable payout equals... c’mon, you’re almost there…

With the proven market trend that shows attendance increases as the season progresses, with an increase in paid attendance in a VERY difficult economy already being shown, with the successful product on the ice, the Nashville situation is much different that Mr. Shoats’ readers are being led to believe. Shame on you Mr. Shoats for your shoddy “journalism.”

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