The Malik Report
by George Malik on 08/12/13 at 01:46 PM ET
This isn't Red Wings-related, but it's pretty spiffy: SportsBusiness Journal's David Broughton named Toledo, Ohio the best minor-league sports market in the U.S., and the co-owned and city's two marquee teams, the co-ran Toledo Mud Hens baseball team and ECHL's Toledo Walleye, are absolutely delighted by the news, as Mud Hens and Walleye GM Joe Napoli told the Toledo Blade's Mark Monroe:
“It's great because it's something that is unbiased,” Napoli said. “It uses methodology that goes beyond a good story. Some of the sports publications will do stories about the most popular sports markets and it usually revolves around the team's performance. This is from a purely business perspective. Their analysis is based on the size of the market place. We have followed this very closely.”
More than 550,000 fans attended Mud Hens games at Fifth Third Filed last season, which included 33 sellouts. Last season, the Walleye set a franchise record for attendance when 226,743 spectators games at the Huntington Center. The team had nine sell-outs and set a team record for group tickets.
Every year, both clubs also are at or near the top of their respective leagues in merchandise sales. Napoli also credited the organizations' corporate sponsors.
“There are very good organizations out there that give customer service lip serve,” Napoli said. “And there are others that live it. Awards are only meaningful if they are accurate and reflect the truth. When they told when we were No. 1, I was speechless.”
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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.