The start of the 2011/12 season is just a few weeks away and season ticket holders are likely now in possession of their ticket packages for the season. Some lucky fans had their tickets personally delivered by a member of the Oilers, while others like myself got the standard Canada Post delivery. With tickets now in hand that means it's that time of year when you get together with a few buddies and split up the package.
This isn't something I do because I have a problem where I feel a need to try and go to every game on the schedule. To be totally honest it's not healthy, but me and my addiction are in a good place right now and I see no reason why I need to change because I can stop going to games any time I want to; I just don't want to. For those of you with lives outside of Rexall Place though, you may only get to see five or maybe ten games a season and you want to see the best games possible. So allow me to help you out a little and give you some information that might just help you get the best tickets available.
Who the Oilers are playing obviously factors into whether or not you want a particular game. So lets start with the basic schedule breakdown. The 41 homes games are split up like this: the Northwest Division teams each play here three times, Pacific and Central Division teams come to town twice, and nine Eastern Conference teams play a single game here. Those Eastern Conference games include three of the four Canadian teams (not the Jets) as well.
My advice would be to pass on the divisional games early and pickup a game against those eastern teams who rarely come to town. I'd be looking at the Capitals, Devils, Flyers, Penguins, or Rangers who will be visiting Edmonton for just the third time since the lockout. The Hurricanes have also been here just two times during the regular season but I seem to recall a few other games against them.
Past the first couple of rounds though the picks get a little harder as the games aren't jumping off the page any more. At this point turn to the following chart. This gives you the Oilers home record post lockout, winning percentage, goals for and against, and goals per game versus every team playing here in Edmonton this season.
If you like goals, might I suggest seeing the Avalanche. Want to see a win, check out the Blue Jackets. Montreal should be marketed as guaranteed win night. On the other hand, if you want to see the other team win and a low scoring game at the same time be sure to grab a Kings game.
Who the Oilers are facing off against is only half of the equation though, the days of the week is another thing you need to be thinking about. Remember, not all games are created equal. Would you rather watch the Oilers lose on a Tuesday or lose on a Friday night when you're having a few beers and heading out after. Me, I choose a little of both with beers on Tuesday but I'm not normal. Here's the day by day breakdown for the season.
The good news is that there are plenty of weekend games to go around but you've got to be sure to get your fair share. In fact, get greedy and get more than you fair share if you can. Make a big deal out of taking a Wednesday game just so nobody realizes you also have eight weekend games. If one of your buddies has kids up sell the Sunday 6:00 as a "kid friendly" game. Does that even make sense? I don't know. I don't have kids but it sounds good.
Splitting up season tickets might not seem like a competition, but it is. If you take it seriously you can take advantage of you friends and stick them with the dud games. Good luck.