By Zachary Baru
The Springfield Falcons opened their season Saturday earning their first win over the Manchester Monarchs 3-2 before a crowd of 5,528 at the MassMutual Center. As satisfying as a crowd of 5,000-plus is, it was still down from last year's opening night crowd of 6,171 against St. John's.
The Falcons' average attendance last season of 3,906 fell well below the league average of 5,710. What is encouraging, however, is the Falcons' increase last season from the 2011-12 season, which was 6.8 percent.
In order to be looked at as a successful season off the ice, attendance should be averaging above the 4,000 mark. While not an easy task, it is certainly reachable, especially in a market that showed the Falcons increased support last season. The talent that the Columbus system brings to Springfield looks to be promising, and hopefully continued success on the ice will translate to the same at the gate. Last season the Falcons captured the Northeast Division title.
Although this year's opening night attendance fell short of last year's, a crowd of 5,000-plus is still a positive way to begin the season. The question is, will the support continue?
Source: SportsBusiness Journal
Zach Baru can be followed on Twitter @zbaru and reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.