USA's Jamie Langenbrunner (L) and USA's Patrick Kane warm up prior to the men's Gold medal match against Canada at Canada Hockey Place in Vancouver, BC during the 2010 Winter Olympics, February 26, 2010. (Jean Levac / Canwest News Service).
VANCOUVER — Apparently, not everyone has their price.
No amount of your money, some claim, could pry gold-medal hockey tickets from their hands on Sunday. In fact, you might have to take a five-minute fighting major and two-minute instigator penalty just to engage them in conversation.
"There’s no way I’d ever sell the tickets," said Olympic hockey fan Chris Mahony.
And that’s saying something.
On Vanoc’s fan-to-fan re-sale site, asking prices for the gold-medal match between Canada and the Americans Sunday afternoon range from $2,700 for a ticket in the upper bowl to $100,000 for four seats in section 121, row 23 (yes, they are together).
At Showtimetickets.com, single-ticket values are in the $3,000 to $6,000 range, and it’s the same on Craigslist.
Want to impress your friends? Buy a suite on Showtime for $138,000.
"It’s incomparable," said Mario Livich, CEO of Showtimetickets.com. "The is the hottest ticket ever in the history of Canadian sport."
Mahony’s toughest decision since landing four tickets in the lottery hasn’t been to-sell-or-not-to-sell, but rather which of his eight brothers to take.
Peter and Paddy, who co-run Mahony’s Vancouver business, are assured of their place, he said.
Chris Napier, a Vancouver physiotherapist, nabbed a pair in the second online selling phase, four rows up in the balcony for $550 each.
He joked that his wife has been threatening to sell them for six months and he admits to seriously having the conversation. But they’ll be at Canada Hockey Place on Sunday.
"We thought for a while we’d put them up on the Vanoc site for some astronomical price, like $20,000, and if someone wants to pay that then we’d be happy," Napier, 31, said. "Basically, we tried to figure out what we’d need for a down payment on a house, but we never posted them because I wasn’t sure if that was enough.
"Nothing like this is ever going to happen again. You can make money for the rest of your life."
When Canada lost to the U.S. in the preliminary round, Livich said the re-sale values dropped 40 per cent at his site. They went up 20 per cent after the quarter-final win over Russia, and climbed again after Friday’s semifinal win over Slovakia.
Now, those looking to sell have their perfect scenario — Canada going for gold, against the U.S. — and, for some, there is a magic number.
Mark Schootman picked up two tickets in section 101, row 18, in the last round of online sales.
Face value: $755. And for $12,000, Schootman says you can have the pair.
"If someone wants to take my experience away from me, they’re going to have to pay for it so I can have another life-changing experience," he said.
That would be in Europe with wife Adrienne, to celebrate the completion of her master’s degree.
And where would Schootman watch from, if not live from the arena?
"Maybe I’ll buy a new TV and have friends over," he said. "Or find a nice seat at a bar and drink my gold tickets away."
That’s a lot of booze.
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