The past few weeks have been the never-ending dream for Raptor’s fans across the world, as the Toronto team continues to defy the odds in the NBA Finals. Following another victory against rivals Golden State Warriors on Friday night in Oakland, the Canadians now lead by 3 games to 1. While very few are daring enough to say it aloud, there is a real chance that the Raptors could be crowned NBA champions on Monday night and that's why tickets for Game 5 are unbelievably expensive.
The Toronto Raptors are now on the brink of history, with the potential to be the first team from outside the United States to ever be crowned NBA champions. Naturally, Canadians and fans from the rest of the world are 100% behind them. While most Raptors fans would do anything to be there, to see Game 5 played in person is a luxury most ordinary people cannot afford because as of yesterday, some ticket prices are now reaching upwards of $120,000.
While there are still some tickets available for Game 5, savvy sellers have ensured they won’t go cheap. As of Sunday morning, for just one ticket in the fan zone area of the arena most tickets are sitting around the $2,000 mark. The cheapest option altogether is for one standing ticket in the balcony sideline or baseline, which will set you back around $1,500.
For anyone who has an easy $124,000 lying around, Ticketmaster has two courtside tickets, only available as a pair, going for an eye-watering $50,000 each, with $20,000 in service fees for the two. Pretty shocking when only last year, during a regular season game versus the same team, 300-level tickets cost just $170.
Speaking to CBC News Vijay Stelur, who is a marketing instructor at York University's Schulich School of Business, said those prices were “insane” but indicative of how supply and demand works. He said, "You have fans from not only this region, but from across Canada, and even around the world, who have never seen the Raptors make it this far."
Noting that Toronto is one of the richest cities in North America, he said people will pay anything to be able “to say that they were there," which is worse so much more than materialistic items. "Being able to experience something that heightens their senses and stokes their emotions and passions- that for a lot of people is more important than just buying goods off a shelf," he said.
Fans shelling out big bucks are not the only ones going above and beyond to support the Raptors. Superfans in the city have already started to camp outside Toronto’s Jurassic Park, two days early, in a bid to secure the best viewing spots for the game on Monday night.
For fans who are absolutely desperate to see the game in person, but can’t afford the extortionate prices, hope is not lost. Sports and theatre tickets website, vividseats.com, is giving away x2 lower bowl and x4 upper bowl tickets for free to Ontario residents on their Twitter page.
While the majority of Raptor’s fans don’t have the spare time to queue up for Jurassic Park two days early, or $60,000 cash lying spare for a courtside ticket, a groundbreaking Raptors win in Game 5 would taste just as sweet from the bar side in your local pub or the comfort of your own front living room.