The New York Knicks have sent out a pledge to season ticket holders promising refunds with interest should the NBA have to cancel games as it continues to lock its players out. Which is a nice move. It should be an expected move. And yet it still won't be the best move.
First, the story, from the New York Post:
The Post has obtained a letter sent to Knicks season-ticket holders on July 1 which specifies any cancelled games will be refunded with interest on a monthly basis.
According to a person with knowledge of the situation, the lockout interest rate is 1 percent, with calculations beginning Oct. 1. Each letter sent out was personalized.
The letter read, in part, "If any 2011-12 preseason or regular season games are cancelled due to a work stoppage, all Season Subscribers will have the option of receiving a refund with interest on a monthly basis, or have money left on account with interest. More specific details about refunds or credits will be shared at the appropriate time."
Understand that this isn't an attempt to take another cheap dig at the Knicks, their policies, and their ownership. With nearly 3 1/2 months before the season is supposed to start, this is a sound move.
The issue here is that season ticket holders aren't always the most devoted fans. Often, there's no single "holder," but a company or corporation that buys a pair of seats and hands them out to clients or staff months before teams even assemble for training camp. These clients or staff then make plans around these seats, assuming they haven't moved those ducats on to their own clients or staff by then (or those clients and/or staff haven't moved them on again, and again …), and money is spent preparing for Dec. 12, or March 19, or whatever.
The point is that reservations are made, out-of-town visitors have hotel reservations and flights lined up, and money is spent. And 1 percent interest, I'm sorry, ain't covering that. Cool idea New York Knicks, but it's not enough.
I realize I'm arguing on behalf of people that Archie Bunker would call "muckety-mucks," as I ignore another phone call from a long distance number asking me to pay my bills, but these situations are worth bringing up. If the New York Knicks -- run by an owner who is more out of touch and oblivious than perhaps any other owner in pro sports -- are worried about these things, then things aren't going well.
More fabulous lockout/economy news, I know. Try to stay cool.