Seattle Kraken fans paying a premium to support team

SEATTLE — The Seattle Kraken took control of their first round playoff series with a win in Colorado on Wednesday. The team is one win away from knocking the defending Stanley Cup champions out of the postseason. 

That win could also happen here on home ice Friday. Those high stakes have made tickets and merchandise a hot commodity.

“The team performance really drives sales and drives excitement. It’s not just in the arena. It’s across the city,” said Todd Humphrey, the Kraken’s Senior Vice President of Digital Innovation and Fan Experience.

Humphrey, who has been with the team since the beginning, said while Kraken fans have always bought in, this playoff run has them out in droves.

“After Monday night’s overtime win, the excitement in that arena was really palpable. So people just want to be in that barn,” Humphrey explained.

Over 17,000 fans filled Climate Pledge Arena for Monday’s Game 4. People who plan to go to Friday’s Game 6, where the Kraken can clinch, will pay top dollar.

“I think it was like $350, $375. We didn’t care. We just wanted to be part of this. This is a big game. A huge game, " said Kraken fan Robin Anderson.

The highest ticket prices found by KIRO 7 were on the glass and went for close to $2,000 apiece, but tickets aren’t the only place fans are spending.

“[We’re] buying custom jerseys.  Getting my name, my last name on there with my wife,” said Kraken fan Julio Barrera.  Robin added, “We’re doing full garb but it’s going to be warm tomorrow and I want a playoff jersey possibly, or a T-shirt because it’s going to be a little warmer tomorrow but the jerseys are kind of cool, too.”

Humphrey said on game nights, up to 6,000 fans move through the team store. That’s on top of people who’ve bought merch at other locations, like Robin and Julio, and those who’ve bought merchandise online.

“I can tell you that we are in the top five in terms of team sales; and closer to the top than the bottom of the top five,” Humphrey said.  He added, “We had our call up, Tye Kartye, got his first NHL goal in his first NHL game last night so we had a couple of early requests for his jersey, which is super fun for him and his family.”

The team also said the only ticket resale sight they partner with is Ticketmaster, so tickets bought from someone else can’t be guaranteed.  The team also plans to make special custom jerseys for Tye Kartye’s parents and will give them their new jerseys at Friday’s game.