Mercury Insurance ran a promotion in Southern California where Los Angeles Kings fans could win tickets to every 2015 home playoff game if they applied for a free auto insurance quote. The Kings have won two Cups in three years, and made the playoffs in the last five seasons. No big deal.
Only problem is, no one really expected the Kings to actually miss the playoffs. From Rich Hammond of The Orange County Register:
“We are, of course, professionals, and we plan for every contingency but that wasn’t one of them,” Shane Smith, a marketing executive who helped run the contest, said Friday. “We had a backup plan. We just never seriously thought that we’d need to use it.”
Last Saturday, a fan won her tickets, but little did any one reasonably expect that five days later, they would be useless pieces of paper.
However, the Kings loss might be this fan’s gain. Again, from Hammond:
Instead of playoff tickets, Russell will receive a pair of upper-bowl season tickets for the 2015-16 Kings season … According to Mercury’s official contest rules, those season tickets are worth $1,397.50, while the maximum value for playoff tickets would have been $3,326. That assumed, though, that the Kings would play a maximum of 16 home playoff games, which was highly unlikely.
Not bad, eh?
Watching the playoffs live is a thrill, no doubt, but receiving a full slate of season tickets for free to watch a team like the Kings, in an expensive arena like Staples Center? That’s quite the gain.
For all the conspiracy theorist out there, one conclusion to take away from this incident: playoff ticket drives and/or contests for a team on the bubble will inevitably jinx them /removes tinfoil hat.