Flames tickets already blazing

MIKE D'AMOUR -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 2:13 PM ET

Calgary Flames tickets are red hot, and team management is expected to soon announce record pre-season sales, a spokesman for the hockey club said.

Rollie Cyr, vice-president of ticket sales for the team, said he hasn't seen anything like it in 10 years.

"We have had a great period of renewal," he said.

"Three weeks ago, we sold 200 new season tickets -- that was before the settlement was announced -- and the phone has been ringing off the wall since the announcement."

On Wednesday, the NHL and its players association announced a tentative agreement to end the strike that wiped out the 2004-05 season.

While the deal still has to be ratified by the players at a meeting later this week, it appears there will be professional hockey this year.

The league went into the lockout Sept. 15, and the new six-year collective bargaining agreement -- which still has to be ratified and approved by the NHL board of governors and the rank and file membership of the players association -- will officially end the stalemate on July 21.

The agreement, a complex document reportedly numbering more than 600 pages, came after both sides staged marathon negotiating sessions for ten consecutive days.

When the strike first happened, Flames season ticket holders were given three options, said Cyr.

"They could have cancelled their tickets and taken a full refund, left a 10 percent deposit to assure their seats, or left the money which paid them interest and froze seat prices for two years," he said.

Most, he added, opted for the second or third option.

An announcement about the status of current ticket sales will be made in about two weeks, but Cyr would not give any preliminary numbers.

"The announcement will be very positive," he said.

Even though a games schedule has yet to be announced, fans can purchase tickets now and get dibs on the games when they're known.


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