SinBin.vegas

Praise Be To Foley, Vegas Golden Knights Hockey Website

SinBin.vegas Podcast #78: Blackball

CBS Radio in Las Vegas banned mentions of the Golden Knights, then apologized and changed their mind. We go through the story and the meaning behind it. Hosted by Ken Boehlke and Jason Pothier.

  • Why was this such a big deal?
  • Why did it happen in the first place?
  • Much much more on #CoxBlocked
  • A ton of fan questions.
  • Deryk Engelland, worth $1M already?

And much more…

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13 Comments

  1. Jeff

    Some of your comments really don’t make any sense to me. You admit that 70% of the building is Vegas fans then in the next sentence say that the road trip is a horrible thing prior to having local events due to the lack of local Knights fans. You readily admit that there is already a good base of Knight’s fans in Vegas. I am sure that the Knight’s will be doing all kinds of local promotion. As a matter of fact, the road trip has been very well covered and has a ton of local and national attention. Let the players get to town and start camp or live locally before you make them fly in during the offseason for local promotion to sell tickets to a building that is already sold out. It doesn’t make any sense. They sent like 3 players to a couple cities to build a grassroots base regionally while there not playing games every other night.
    The Cox Communication thing is so overblown. These negotiations happen all the time. The games are over a month away and I’d bet a bunch of money the deal gets done. But, somehow the management of the Knights are ignoring local residents? I’d actually say they were smart to get regional coverage and are sure the local deal will get done. If and when the deal does not get done to broadcast the games locally then I’d throw a fit but won’t you feel a little stupid for causing such a fuss over something that wasn’t done on your schedule, a schedule that somehow requires that everything gets done NOW?

    • Let’s start at the top. 100% of the building will be Golden Knights fans on opening night. On game 2, I’d be surprised if there are 50% Golden Knights fans. I’ve never once admitted that there is a good fan base here in Vegas. Foley said there are 200,000 hockey fans in Vegas, which may or may not be true, I believe there are about 25,000 Golden Knights fans (16,000 of which are ticket owners). The problem with the road trip is that they have had a consistent focus on prioritizing places other than Vegas rather than the team name that will be on the front of the shirt first. There have been such a minimal number of events here in Vegas, yet they spend a week driving out of town to promote the team. Why not promote it here first?

      The Cox thing is a MASSIVE deal. If this doesn’t get done in time for the games to start, it’ll be the biggest snafu in the history of professional sports in North America. They made the announcement to put the team on Cox in May, it’s August now and the (pre)season begins in September. If you think we are freaking out now, you won’t believe what it’ll be like if we make it to September 17th.

      On Twitter you asked me what I would like to see locally. Simple… exactly what they are doing in Montana, Idaho, and Utah. Go to local rinks, go to malls, go to schools, go anywhere in public with players, coaches, management, and that bus. They have had a logo and a name since November, and not a single time have they driven a bus with the name Golden Knights on it in Vegas. This is all free too, all you need are Golden Knights to show up. There’s not a business in the valley that will charge for the team to show up and hang out.

      Another thing that keeps coming up is Foley pouring out money with no return. First off, this is a professional major sports team in a market that’s never had one before, did he expect it to be cheap? But saying there’s no return on investment is absolutely absurd. Foley himself admitted they are in the top 3rd in ticket revenue. They’ve literally sold out almost every single game throughout the first season. They have sold a ridiculous amount of gear being the newest team in pro sports. They made a deal with a radio station that should bring in a ton of revenue. They have a TV deal that has to be netting millions of dollars. They built a practice facility that already has a title sponsor on it likely worth over a million dollars as well. Plus, that building itself will become a cash cow the moment it opens. There are only 3 sheets of ice in the city, and that building has 2 more with the best hockey brand in the world (the NHL) attached to it. They’ll be printing money by renting out the ice.

      The problem is everything has been short sighted. Everything has been about the here and now. Billboards all promote buying something (season tickets, expansion draft, the armory, etc). The focus is on getting money, not gaining fans. They haven’t done enough in Vegas to promote the sport and create fans for life. They had a unique opportunity to touch a lot of fans before they ever even played a game, and they wasted it. Instead, they are up in Montana where the entire state has a population of just over 1 million. Meanwhile, there are 2.1 Million sitting here in Vegas wondering if this team really is their own.

      To be fair, I’m not one who believes Foley or the team owes Vegas or anyone else anything. They can do whatever they like. But I’ve followed sports long enough, and I’ve lived in Las Vegas long enough to know that if the fans don’t feel included they won’t keep supporting the team. Everything seems fine now, but what happens when Chicago comes and 85% of the arena is wearing red? What happens when the TV ratings are nonexistent? What happens when the media realizes Raiders stories constantly outperform VGK stories?

      It may sound like I’m going overboard now, but I’m just predicting the future and I have a platform that allows me to speak directly to the organization. My success is directly correlated to theirs, and I see doom and gloom if they continue down the path they are. I want this team to succeed, I need this team to succeed, and at the moment, they aren’t doing enough. If they win hockey games, they’ll be just fine, but if they don’t (and you should never bank on that from a business perspective) things are going to get real rocky, and unfortunately I’ll be here to say I told you so.

      • Jeff

        I was going to leave it alone because I obviously am in the minority here but I couldn’t let this pass:

        10 biggest Sports failures in North American Sports in no particular order and really not a top 10 just 10 quick ones I thought of because I really don’t care except for number 1…..

        10. Rhonda Roused Getting knocked out in the first 30 seconds of her come back fight.
        9. New England Pats losing in Super Bowl 42 (?)after perfect season
        8. Mike Tyson gets knocked out by Mike Tyson
        7. LA Kings beat San Jose after being down 0 games to 3 in 2014 Stanley cup playoffs
        6. Tim Tebow
        5. The NHL lockout of 2004-2005
        4. Replacement refs lose game for Green Bay Packers
        3. Leon Lett celebrating his touchdown before he actually crossed the line
        2. Patrick Stefan misses shot on empty net breakaway and other team scores
        1. The Knights won’t be on Cox Cable

        Doesn’t really fit does it??

        • Jeff

          Your whole 4th paragraph kind of contradicts you’re whole point doesn’t it?

        • I’ll give you the lockout, that’s definitely worse than this, but individual efforts in games/fights are not comparable at all. There’s no way to avoid losing a game, there is a way to avoid alienating your entire fan base before you even have one. It should be absolutely unfathomable that the first major professional sports team in the history of one of the most recognizable cities in the world is not available on television (or web) for more than 50% of homes in the city. That’s SOOOOOOO much worse than Ronda Rousey not being good at fighting.

          And no, the 4th paragraph does not contradict my point at all. They’ve put out effort looking for 1 thing, return on investment. That is NOT how you build a sports franchise. This isn’t about money, it’s about grabbing fans and making them fans for life, building a fan base. Something they appear much more inclined to do in Montana than in Vegas. Long term, it’ll come back to bite them in the ass.

          • Jeff

            Come on I qualified my list in the first sentence. The point is that a lack of Knights hockey on cox cable hardly is the greatest snafu in North American sports ever.

          • Jeff

            And in my opinion by the time the newness wears off, the product should sell itself, especially if the team starts to win as soon as the creator expects it to.

          • … If their on TV.

            If they aren’t, that newness will wear off in about 2 weeks.

          • Jeff

            Building will still be full though won’t it?

  2. RJ

    Is the Las Vegas market simply a resource for Foley to mine? They are buying tickets so nothing else matters? The novelty will carry us through a year, maybe two, but in 3-4 years the people of Las Vegas will need to become hockey fans.

    I’m not talking about people that are reading and commenting on hockey blogs in August: though it would be nice if Foley was catering to us a little bit. I’m talking about the second shift blackjack dealer who has never had skates on in her life, but bought a couple tickets to bring her kids. I’m talking about the lifelong Cowboys fan electrician who got season tickets because he love sports, And is willing to give the NHL a chance. I’m talking about the retiree why calls himself a hockey fan even though he only watches 2 games of the Stanley Cup finals every year and can only name 5 players that have played in the last 10 years. I’d wager 2/3 of the locals who bought season tickets did so on faith that they WOULD like hockey, not on the knowledge that they already do.

    There are lots of shows on the strip that sell tickets. Carrot Top, Cirque de Soliel, Donnie and Marie. That doesnt mean locals are fans of these things. This team is more and more appearing to not be by Las Vegans, and not be FOR Las Vegans either. Just another show on the strip trying to sell tickets. I’ve been to a couple Cirque shows, it doesnt make me a Cirque fan. It doesnt make me CARE about Cirque de Soliel.

    When Foley became the owner of the 31st NHL team he became not just the owner of that team , but also the owner of the responsibility to create a culture of hockey fandom in Las Vegas. This is a responsibility that he has been shirking in my opinion.

    • Jeff

      You really must have blinders on. Mr Foley, in less than 2 years, has invested more in the Las Vegas Valley, with no return as of yet and actually no guaranteed return at all, than any one person I can ever think of. He’s built probably the nicest practice/public ice arena in the entire world with the intention of building grass roots hockey program. They’ve had local events as a precursor to many years to come for youth hockey. The team and its efforts have been very visible locally. All you guys do is bitch about what he isn’t doing and forgetting about all he’s already done and the foundation of a generation of hockey culture he’s started in Las Vegas. It’s just crazy. Yeah he’s really “mining the local market” right? The guy has done nothing but spend money with absolutely a minimal return to this point. Geeze…..give the guy a break. I usually agree with the points made on here but you guys are way off the mark here.

      • I’m also not going to ignore the comment of saying “all we do is bitch.” This site has never referred to the man by anything other than the name “The Creator,” and have a permanent page basically calling him the God of hockey in Vegas.

        Also, outside of the team itself, we’ve done more promotion for the team and hockey in the valley than anyone. We’ve hosted multiple community events to help create buzz for this team. And most importantly, we post 6+ articles a week, run social media accounts that are incredibly active, and interact with every single person who wants to talk hockey here in Vegas.

        To believe we, of all people, are lacking perspective on what this team has done or not done is unbelievable to me.

        No problem that we disagree on this, but c’mon man, we’ve done much more than bitch about this issue.

        • Jeff

          Ok you’ve done more than bitch and I agree 100% that you’ve promoted this team more than anyone. That’s why I’ve supported and followed this site since the beginning. But you’ve bitched about cox cable and your perception on a lack of promotion. Maybe that bus will cruise down the strip a couple of times now that it’s back. Creating controversy is a great way to pass the dog days of summer as well. I get it…

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