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The Elephant in the Room...

 
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phinmun


Joined: 29 Dec 2007
Posts: 2231
Location: South Carolina
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 11:03 pm    Post subject: The Elephant in the Room... Reply with quote

So on Sundays a variety of us family-muns all collect together primarily to watch Miami play (and to eat Steaks sometimes Smile ). We pay attention to the divisional games and watch what other games we have an interest in as well. Yes, it's a sad, depressing Sunday ritual, aside from the steaks. Especially when you're paying $200-$300 for the right to watch these shenanigans. Sad

The general consensus at our place was that the number of folks able to drop hundreds of dollars for game tickets in Miami today is small compared to other cities and that most importantly the died-in-the-wool fans have moved out and away from South Florida leaving team with a relatively small, dwindling local support structure.

So the obvious question arose. What's the solution? Better team? Different owner? Well, we all sort of looked at each other and shrugged in accord over the fact that there really is no solution as tragic as it sounds. Our family isn't moving back to that hell hole. And who else is? Many of the fans (and their families) are gone and the entire city has underwent a culture change, and I don't just mean philosophically. Wink

So do you guys agree? I mean, I'm a perfect example of that sure, but do you think that there's much the team can do to sustain itself in South Florida? The 1st-qtr attendance today was God-awful if anyone hadn't noticed, the worst it's been all year. You can't really say the team's been bad this year either. Coming into this week we were in the hunt and certainly expected a win.

Be honest, do you really think Miami has a chance to regain the hold on South Florida the way it once did?

And what do you think that will wind up meaning?

I can say with confidence that if the attendance continues as it has been the last few seasons, I don't expect to be seeing the Dolphins of Miami playing in 15 years, not with an NFL that wants to grow and evolve the way this one seems to.
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WaterBear56


Joined: 26 Jul 2010
Posts: 3166
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Miami will never again be one of those die hard fan groups. They will follow as long as you win mostly. That's how it is always gonna be and it's because of our culture. What isn't 'sexy' isn't worth it. At this point, all we can do is win. This year I have seen more Dolphins fans on the street than before, so it's working.
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phinmun


Joined: 29 Dec 2007
Posts: 2231
Location: South Carolina
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

WaterBear56 wrote:
Miami will never again be one of those die hard fan groups. They will follow as long as you win mostly. That's how it is always gonna be and it's because of our culture. What isn't 'sexy' isn't worth it. At this point, all we can do is win. This year I have seen more Dolphins fans on the street than before, so it's working.


Winning ain't gonna hurt! Laughing

I'll give you that much. I just think Miami might be facing a unique dilemma amongst NFL franchises in which it's seen the original fan-base migrate away only to leave a city of people who are both uninterested in and unable to afford NFL football.

It's easy to think that winning will help, and I'm sure it will to an extent, but I'm wondering if Miami has a population willing to financially back this team.
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SUG


Joined: 15 May 2007
Posts: 6849
Location: Alameda, Ca
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 8:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great topic phinmun.

I view the resurrection of the Dolphins like I do the economy & the different economic classes.

a). Like the American car industry, start making a good, trustworthy car & people will buy it but not before you rectify all
the cost cutting measures that led you to stop being competitive.
The thing is that the yrs of neglect do not rectify themselves over night, it takes time to rebuild that relationship.

b). As for the philosophical aspect you mentioned ...
In Mia this is gonna be even tougher than in most cities. This is due to the fact that such a vast amount of
it's citizens are from countries where soccer (the other white meat) rules.
NFL football to soccer is like comparing a rich mans sport to a poor mans sport in so many aspects.
Has anyone seen how much cheaper it is to go to a regional, AAA league soccer event in comparison to an NFL event & still
support your team in a loss...?

If your team is not making a significant connection with the common man then what does that leave ...???
Making a connection by rolling out the red carpet, how sustainable is that when you are still loosing ...?

I do have a strong faith in that Philbin will turn this team around but the Dolphins are losing the battle on 2 fronts for now.

I do however love the fact that Philbin benched both R. Bush & Incognito. He must have been saying something to them all along the wk leading up to the gm for him to do that...

sug
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Maddogg


Joined: 29 Mar 2007
Posts: 1835
Location: A Galaxy Far Far Away......
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 8:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The NFL has simply peaked. Nearly all revenue sources have been tapped. The current NFL TV contracts are huge at an estimated 3.1 billion per year for the next 9 years.

The drain on an individual however for tickets, parking and food increases at an average annual rate of 6.37% while net income has risen by 3.14%. Add in Miami as one of the hardest hit housing markets. The local economy in the Miami Dade area would be even worse if not for the relatively cheap US dollar and foreign tourists keeping many businesses afloat.

NFL owners already realize that other options need to be explored. Hence the London games. Trips to Mexico. As far as the fan at the stadium the new hot term in the NFL is "game day experience". Its purpose is to provide other forms of entertainment on the day of the game with hopes of boosting attendance and separating more of your money from your wallet.

The end result is , that it will be harder for all teams to keep the stadiums full on Sunday. Yes a winning franchise will have an easier time as everyone loves a winner. Even the blackout rules have been changed to keep the aura of the sellout. However for the lunch pail guy that used to go to every game, its now becoming a choice between paying a bill or for a game.

Don't go crying for the NFL they will go on getting richer.The NFL is very aware of empty seats. There are some very interesting articles out there on the future of the NFL in relation to stadium attendance. Edukate youself I is.
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bpastermack


Joined: 17 Feb 2009
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 9:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Miami hasn't won a significant playoff game in like 2 decades. I think that has a lot more to do with it than any of the other things mentioned. One great Super Bowl run and it will create die hard fans for another decade. The Buccs used to be the laughing stock of the NFL and nobody cared about them. That's not to say they are the most loved team now, but they are building excitement again and stealing some Miami fans in the process. Another thing we need is some real stars in particular at the QB position. Dan Marino never won a super bowl, but he made a ton of lifelong Dolphins fans.

Trust me, there are PLENTY of wealthy people in Miami to sell out that whole stadium and then some. They just don't have anything to get excited enough about to go to the games.
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Deadeye


Joined: 07 Apr 2008
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Location: A Nearby Dolphin Encounter
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 11:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Miami will not support an NFL team unless that team is a consistent playoff team (which we are not), and maybe not even then. The best thing Ross can do about the empty seats is keep letting the football people build a winner. If the team can make the playoffs in a year or two and hopefully win a playoff game, then maybe the local fans will take notice and return to the stadium.

Short of that, nothing will work. People aren't going to plop down hundreds of dollars to watch an NFL game when the TV product is so good and free. The NFL has priced themselves out of their own market.

This might lead to the Phins relocating some time down the road. That wil be sad, but things change. The Hurricanes are also teetering on the brink of irrelevence, and I wouldn't be surprised if they get left out of the new system that is coming in college football. They have as hard of a time filling the stadium as the Dolphins.
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hammer


Joined: 08 Jan 2008
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Location: Cincinnati
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 1:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I owned the team it would become the Los Angeles Dolphins.
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phinmun


Joined: 29 Dec 2007
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Location: South Carolina
PostPosted: Mon Nov 12, 2012 3:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great posts, guys!

This issue is way deeper than just a bad football team.

It's driven by money but I'm afraid the population in Miami today is just not the same as it was decades ago. As was touched on, the influx of immigration and the out-going wave of ex-Floridians to other areas of the country is something I'm not sure any other team has had to deal with.

The incoming population doesn't seem to have the desire or finances to support the sports teams of South Florida. In addition, the in-home experience has simply gotten too good. Tailgating for a Clemson Tigers game for example is a great time but it's also relatively inexpensive and the experience is wonderful with the beautiful area surrounding the campus and the majority of attendees whom are students. It's a safe, clean and welcoming environment as I'm sure most college towns provide.

It makes you wonder if in 50 years there will be any desire what-so-ever in anyone to leave their home to view an NFL game. It just doesn't seem to make sense considering the overwhelming expense of tickets and other rising costs:

1.) Time-Involved
2.) Parking and Fees
3.) Humidity, Rain, Heat, etc.
4.) Food/Drink Prices
5.) Seating/Accommodations
6.) Violence

Combine all that with a fan-base that has little regard for the sport in general (let alone a bad team) and it really makes you wonder about the Dolphins future.

Before you say LA however...

...LA faces these same problems. LA isn't necessarily the place you want to go.
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Mercury22


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 3:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

winning will cure everything. Attendance is not a problem because of the city, or the economy, its a problem with fielding poor teams and lacking star attraction. Win games and the stands will magically start filling up. Guaranteed. Continue to lose and the fans will find other things to do with their money. It really is as simple as that.
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phinmun


Joined: 29 Dec 2007
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mercury22 wrote:
winning will cure everything. Attendance is not a problem because of the city, or the economy, its a problem with fielding poor teams and lacking star attraction. Win games and the stands will magically start filling up. Guaranteed. Continue to lose and the fans will find other things to do with their money. It really is as simple as that.


I used to believe that but I don't think it's true. We all hope it's not true but I think the real evidence harder to find to support those types of ideas.

That theory doesn't account for the other bad teams around the NFL that don't have attendance issues. Our stadium isnt just lacking attendance, it's empty.
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Mercury22


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 5:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

phinmun wrote:
Mercury22 wrote:
winning will cure everything. Attendance is not a problem because of the city, or the economy, its a problem with fielding poor teams and lacking star attraction. Win games and the stands will magically start filling up. Guaranteed. Continue to lose and the fans will find other things to do with their money. It really is as simple as that.


I used to believe that but I don't think it's true. We all hope it's not true but I think the real evidence harder to find to support those types of ideas.

That theory doesn't account for the other bad teams around the NFL that don't have attendance issues. Our stadium isnt just lacking attendance, it's empty.


Sure, there are teams that are bad that still have attendance, but there aren't many/any teams that are killing it that are having trouble getting patrons. Not that I am aware of, anyway. Some teams, based on location, have so many other entertainment options that going to see a losing team play doesn't make sense. I live in Los Angeles. The Lakers ALWAYS sell out. The Clippers never used to sell out. Once they started winning attendance went up significantly. Same market, but different product. Miami has such nice weather that unless the Dolphins are winning most would probably prefer to do something else in the sunshine state . However, I don't recall hearing that the Heat had any trouble filling their arena during the last few years with LeBron in town and the team winning the title.

Its about winning. The Dolphins literally haven't fielded a regularly winning team since Marino left. That is bound to hurt attendance. Turn things around and I am certain the fans will return.
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DolphWins


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 13, 2012 8:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The stadium will fill when we start winning. Ive been an Orioles fan for as long as I can remember and we hadnt made the playoffs in 12 years or something around that. Everytime I went to a game or watched a game the stadium was 3/4 empty. Soon as they got a winning streak going it started to fill and when it got close to the playoffs they were starting to sell out.

Winning solves everything.
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bpastermack


Joined: 17 Feb 2009
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 14, 2012 9:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

phinmun wrote:
Mercury22 wrote:
winning will cure everything. Attendance is not a problem because of the city, or the economy, its a problem with fielding poor teams and lacking star attraction. Win games and the stands will magically start filling up. Guaranteed. Continue to lose and the fans will find other things to do with their money. It really is as simple as that.


I used to believe that but I don't think it's true. We all hope it's not true but I think the real evidence harder to find to support those types of ideas.

That theory doesn't account for the other bad teams around the NFL that don't have attendance issues. Our stadium isnt just lacking attendance, it's empty.


But I don't think we need to win a few games to get fans back. I don't think we need to have several playoff runs. I think we need to get to the super bowl 2 out of 3 years, or better yet win one. And do it with a star player or two that people want to root for. That's what Miami is missing. There isn't anything for people to get excited about!
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