Bucks.com: Cheer the Future sales deal serves up free 15/16 season tix
The Bucks' marketing folks had to get plenty creative trying to sell tickets during last season's 15-67 horror show, and it looks like they're not letting a little bit of summer optimism provide an excuse to slack off. This week the Bucks announced a new "Cheer the Future" ticket offer through the end of August that's actually pretty newsworthy: If you (and/or a group of friends) buy a select season ticket package and attend all 40 games next season, you get the same tickets for the 15/16 season for free. If you can't make all 40 home games, you can still get a 50% discount for 15/16 if you go to at least 30 games and 75% off if you go to at least 35 (note: the Bucks' January matchup with the Knicks in London counts as their 41st "home" game). For more, check out Bucks VP of Marketing Dustin Godsey providing all the details on WSSP Thursday.
Of course, the Bucks aren't crazy for doing this--as unprecedented as the offer might be, it's also savvy marketing that looks like a win-win for both the Bucks and fans who want to lock down cheap tickets over the next two years. The tickets being offered are for "select" seats in the lower ($37 each) and upper bowls ($22 and $12), which not surprisingly aren't the choicest seats around. Those are the seats that often go empty on Tuesday nights in February, and the kind that you can get for dirt cheap if you want to buy tickets game-to-game. But the flip side is that they're also the most affordable tickets, providing the easiest entry point for people who don't have five-plus grand to spend on premium seats. If you're a die-hard Bucks fan who just wants to get into games, you can actually get 80 games over the next two years for less than $500. Pretty cool.
Personally, I also like the fact that the Bucks want people not just to buy tickets, but also go to the damn games. An empty arena just isn't any fun, and--ticket revenues notwithstanding--whatever the Bucks can do to guarantee a louder, more crowded gym should be considered a major positive.
Twitter: Bucks ink deal with data analytics provider Vantage Sports
More evidence of the expanded budgets available at Bucks headquarters?
We are excited to work with the Bucks next year pic.twitter.com/VKS6wZDCbp— Vantage Sports (@VantageSports) August 14, 2014
For those not familiar, Vantage provides data and video analytics that (at least from what I've heard/read) is something of a hybrid between what Synergy and SportVU provide. Synergy is of course ubiquitous around the league (and has publicly-available data as well), while the Bucks were among the early adopters of SportVU's camera-based tracking technology a few years ago. Vantage tracks data on things like the efficacy of players shooting contested jumpers or how they perform as help defenders, and you can check out some example applications on their blog.
Basketball Insiders: Brandon Knight extension unlikely
There hasn't been any talk of Brandon Knight and the Bucks agreeing to an extension this summer, and with good reason. Knight and his agent are probably harboring dreams of a monster 14/15 season leading to a $10+ million annual salary next summer, while the Bucks shouldn't have any urgency to lock up a player of uncertain value who is still a year away from hitting restricted free agency. In short, it's likely in both sides' interest to table negotiations until 2015, which is what Steve Kyler's latest at Basketball Insiders implies:
It is unlikely that the Bucks and Knight reach an extension unless it’s a landslide in Milwaukee’s favor. Both sides have talked and the Bucks say they want to keep him so a deal is very possible. It’s going to come down to the math and that may not get decided until this summer.
Apparently a shot-blocker's instincts can't be turned off?