by Contributing Author
Watching sports and supporting athletes as they strive to reach greatness is one of the most popular pastimes on Earth. While most people have gotten used to taking in sporting contests through TV screens, there is something palpable about being inside an arena or stadium watching the drama unfold in front of your eyes.
To feel the atmosphere of being in a giant crowd along with tens of thousands of like-minded individuals as you all hope for the same outcome can be an exhilarating experience. However, since sports leagues are businesses, the privilege of attending a monumental event often gets reserved for those with deep pockets. Some occasions are priceless, but being in a location to watch sporting history unfold often carries a price tag, a hefty one.
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Below, we seek to educate you on some of the costliest sporting tickets in recent memory. In doing so, we will also attempt to answer the following questions:
· What is the most expensive sporting event ticket of all time?
· What is the most expensive sport to play?
· What were the most expensive NFL tickets ever?
· What is the average World Cup ticket price?
· What were the most expensive NBA playoff tickets?
· What World Series ticket prices were most expensive?
· How much are boxing tickets for marquee fights?
Super Bowl XLVII got held at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans on February 3. The two teams that face-off to decide the 2012 NFL champion were the Baltimore Ravens and San Francisco 49ers. They did so in front of a televised audience of 108 million. Over 71,000 people watched Ravens narrowly beat the 49ers 34 to 31 from inside the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
A few days before the event, the cheapest ticket available was $1,580, with the average one hovering around $3,600 territory. That said, by the time the first whistle was approaching, tickets reached prices of $175,560. A bit of fun trivia is that if one ranks the most expensive NFL tickets by a team, currently, the Las Vegas Raiders would lead the pack, with an average price of $153 per game, and the Steelers would trail behind them with $114 per regular-season game.
The 2016 Major League Baseball season was noteworthy because it marked the Cubs winning their first World Series since 1908 by defeating the Cleveland Indians 4-3 in seven games. The win ended the longest world championship drought in North American pro sports history.
The series also made headlines due to the average ticket per game going for $2,904. If you are curious concerning – what is the most expensive seat sold for this series? Well, rumblings are that the best ones went for as much as $1.54 million. In early November 2016, Sports Illustrated reported that tickets for game 7 of the series were going for more than $25,000 on the open market.
The 2013 World Cup was a special one because it was the first time Brazil hosted the competition since 1950 when they lost in the final to Uruguay. Having not won the title in the previous two World Cups, most Brazilians were sure they would lift the trophy again on home soil. Unfortunately for them, they got demolished by Germany 7-1 in the semi-final held in Belo Horizonte.
The Germans went all the way by beating a Messi-led Argentina in Rio de Janeiro. Official ticket prices for the final were $440, on the cheap-end. Nonetheless, multiple media outlets stated that ticket prices on the black market ranged from $5,000 to $20,000. Moreover, the highest one reported stood at $34,500.
Djokovic will likely go down in history as the sport’s most decorated player. That is a stunning feat, considering Novak hails from rather a modest country, and tennis often gets mentioned as one of the most expensive sports to play. In 2013, he already had established himself as the world’s number one ranked player, and predictions were that he would claim his second Wimbledon crown with relative ease.
Yet, Djokovic ran into a determined Andy Murray in the final who took home the win and became the first British man since 1936 to win at Wimbledon. The duel between Djokovic and Murray caused so much interest in Britain that resellers listed ticket prices as high as $85,800.
Conor McGregor entered the UFC in 2013 after capturing the featherweight and lightweight Cage Warrior belts. He quickly dispatched Marcus Brimage via TKO in his debut and swiftly proclaimed that he would win both the 145 and 155-pound belts in the world’s top organization.
Three years later, he accomplished that feat by beating Eddie Alvarez to capture the UFC lightweight belt in Madison Square Garden in front of 20,427 people, an attendance that generated a gate of $17,7 million. The numbered PPV event (205) had the most expensive cheat ticket for a UFC fight ever at $783.
The max re-sell price found online for this card was $25,000. The odds for the fight were even going in, and it proved exciting as winning big.
According to virtually everyone, a boxing match between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather should have happened in late 2009 or early 2010, when both were at the peak of their physical primes. Sadly, multiple disputes and failed negotiations drew the fight from getting put together until 2015. When it did eventually happen, it became the most significant combat sports event in history, revenue-wise.
Mayweather won a boring decision, as Pacquiao claimed that he entered the fight with a hurt shoulder. The dull in-ring affair aside, the event was a money-making monster, generating an unpreceded 4.6 million PPV buys. Ticket prices ranged from $3,500 to a whopping $250,000 for a seat in the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Paradise, Nevada.
The summer of 2010 was a crazy period for the NBA, as LeBron James was getting ready to leave Cleveland, and the Lakers and Celtics were duking it out in the finals. Analysts favored the Lakers to win the playoffs, and they did, but Boston went down swinging.
Interest in this series was off the charts. Staples Center prices hit over $5,600 before the start of game seven. StubHub, the famous ticketing platform, announced that they sold a $37,000 ticket for game four of the series, and rumors are that someone paid $151,000 for a courtside seat for game seven.
Expect new records to get set soon. Paying enormous sums for ticket prices has slowly become a common hobby for wealthy social media-obsessed personalities chasing clout. Sports teams and promoters are free to raise the ticket prices to their events as long as someone is willing to pay what they are peddling. Naturally, the competitions that involve long-term rivalries are the ones that can generate the most interest and rake in the most cash. So keep an eye on those if you want to read up on new ticket milestones.
Shelly Schiff has been working in the gambling industry since 2009, mainly on the digital side of things. However, over her eleven-year career, Shelly has provided content for many other top interactive gaming websites. She knows all there is to know about slots and has in-depth knowledge of the most popular table games. Her golden retriever Garry occupies most of her leisure time. Though, when she can, she loves reading Jim Thompson-like crime novels.