Saturday, March 13, 2010

Big 12 Tournament Trip Day 2, Continued

A little more time to post now that the tournament is over. Pun City will start back at day 2, which was really the first day of the games.

Arriving near the Sprint Center, Pun City was able to find a parking lot for $4.00 all day (near the corner of 9th and Holmes). Two minor problems that ultimately didn't dissuade this blog from parking there were: 1. It was a decent walk. Probably almost 2 miles. 2. Had to have exact change, since it was one of those money slot / no attendant lots. Fortunately, this blog had about $9.00 in quarters in the car, so the coin thing wasn't a problem. That was the first time Pun City had ever used such a machine for parking though. It worked fairly well, this blog would try it again.

After hiking to the Sprint Center, Pun City encountered the first scalpers of the day. They asked if this blog needed one, Pun City said yes, worst seat in the house. He showed Pun City a $32.50 ticket, and said $30 would work. Not wanting to miss out on the games, this blog just jumped on it, no questions asked. In hindsight this was probably stupid, and this blog would have had a decent chance to knock it down to $20, possibly even $10 if it was a little more patient. As a postscript, this blog gave him $40, and he only had one $5 and a lot of $20s, so he tried to give Pun City just the $5.00 and "call (the $5.00 he didn't want to give me) a tip." Pun City did say "Uh, no." and the dude got a $10 from his "supervisor."

One weird thing about scalpers is that they have supervisors on site. One wouldn't expect this, but it is definitely the norm. Pun City believes that the supervisors keep an eye on the general market (probably calling other supervisors in different areas around the arena) and pass down price adjustments to the subordinates.

Back to the day - Pun City had some time to kill, and also wanted to see about tickets to other games. This part of negotiations was much better than the inauspicious start this blog got off to. One guy (not a pro) had 2 tickets for the late games that night, Pun City offered $20.00 for one, and he said no since he wanted to keep the pair together. No problem, on to the next dude. This guy (again, not a pro) had a really good seat (like 2nd row, halfcourt) for the late games, and wanted $50.00 for it ($75 was face value). Pun City really just wanted to be in the building, so the quality of the seat was unimportant. This blog told him "It's a good deal, but (this blog doesn't) need that good of a seat." On to the next dude. A pro noticed that Pun City needed tickets to later sessions, and must have figured this blog wanted tickets to all sessions. This was accurate. He offered a full strip of lower level seats for $400.00.

This was a good deal, but there was negotiating to be done. Three things were working in Pun City's favor here: 1. Pun City didn't need lower-level seats. 2. Pun City didn't need tickets to the first session, as it already had those, and 3. It soon became evident that the all-session pass was a single ticket, which is tough to get rid of for a scalper.

Pun City said "(This blog)'ll give you $330 and you can keep Session 1." He said, "No way, you can get $200 for this one alone! (pointing to the semi-final that Kansas was presumed to play in to)". Pun City said "(This blog doesn't) need lowers, that doesn't make any difference for (Pun City). Plus (this blog doesn't) need one for Session 1." His response was to point out that Pun City could sell the Session 1 ticket. This blog replied, "No, (this blog doesn't) want to mess with that." Pun City began walking away, and he said "There's no way you're getting in there for $330." This blog replied, "Then go $350." He said something to the effect of "No, I can get almost all of that just with the semifinals." Pun City replied, "Kansas is going to lose and it'll be easy to get in to those semifinals." Dude must have been a Kansas fan, because he said, "No way! Who's going to beat them?" Pun City replied, "They're going to tank it so they can rest for the NCAAs." At this point, the supervisor must have heard enough, because he okayed the $350 price for sessions 2 through 6.

Not too shabby, $380 for all sessions. The cheapest tickets Pun City had seen for lower level seats online was about $600.00, so this worked. The cheapest tickets Pun City had seen for all sessions anywhere in the building were $420, so this was great.

Pun City was betting on the fact that they wouldn't actually sell that Session 1 ticket, so once this blog entered the building, it proceeded to the location of its Session 2-6 seats, and just stayed there. Sure enough, no one came to the seat, so Pun City got to sit in the lower deck for the whole tournament.

The first day's games weren't especially close, but it was good to see some new teams, bands, and fans.

Among the highlights:

Texas Tech's band played Take On Me, Sledgehammer, Land of 1000 Dances, Dirty Little Secret, Stacy's Mom, and Free Ride.

Colorado's band played Sell Out, Someday Love Will Find You, The Hey Song, Green Day's Holiday, Hey Pachucho, Crazy Train, Kashmir, and Soak Up The Sun.

Nebraska's band played That's The Way I Like It, Land of 1000 Dances, Any Way You Want It, Let Me Stand Next To Your Fire, Knock On Wood, and Heartbreaker.

Missouri's band played Eye of The Tiger (get it, since they're the Tigers!), Sweet Child of Mine, and Respect. Missouri's dance team is known as the Golden Girls.

Oklahoma State's band played Sell Out, Heartbreaker, The Hey Song, Rubberband Man (The Spinners version, not the T.I. version), and Call To Post.

Oklahoma's band played Hush Hush, a sweet re-arrangement of the Sportscenter theme, So Glad You Made It, The Hey Song, and Hold On Loosely. They also played Jim Ross's WWE entrance music a lot.

Iowa State's band played Hush Hush, Basket Case, Crazy Train, Sell Out, The Hey Song, Take On Me, and Kashmir. Also of note, Pun City saw Marquette transfer Scott Christopherson play in this game. Christopherson joins Ron Howard, Ryan Amoroso, and Karon Bradley as MU transfers that Pun City saw play at MU and in conference tournaments for their new teams.

Texas's band played Come Out And Play.

Up Next: Day 3.

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