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Looking At The Best Deals In Sports

This post is from guest blogger Brian Gainor:

Take a quick moment to think about the last time you attended a sporting event and considered it a great value. Has that ever happened? If it has, did it occur in the past six months?

As price-conscious consumers continue to grapple with the current economy, professional and collegiate organizations are seeking new ways to deliver value for their fans. Here is a list of some of the best values currently being offered in the sports marketplace:

Season Tickets
Minnesota Timberwolves: The Minnesota Timberwolves are offering a "Buy One, Get One Free" season ticket promotion for lower bowl seats at the Target Center. As part of the promotion, fans also receive one authentic autographed jersey and a meet-n-greet with their favorite Wolves player.

New Jersey Nets: The New Jersey Nets are selling 1,300 season ticket packages at a price of $440 (approximately $10/game) with a "Buy Now, Pay Later" guarantee. Any fan that purchases these select season tickets will not be charged on their credit card until January.

Blue Jackets Fans
Blue Jackets Fans

Individual Tickets
Indiana Pacers: The Indiana Pacers are offering a "Slam Dunk Sampler" mini season ticket package that enables fans to receive tickets to eleven games for the price of eight.

Dallas Mavericks: For the second consecutive year, the Dallas Mavericks are offering 500 fans the chance to purchase $2 tickets for the majority of the team's home games in 2008. The ticket promotion is Mark Cuban's way of letting all consumers in the Dallas DMA see the team play live.

Columbus Blue Jackets: The team collaborated with Huntington Bank to offer the "Huntington Green Seats", a section of 250-500 upper bowl seats that are sold for just $10 during the two hours period leading up to every home game. The offer creates artificial demand for upper bowl seating at Nationwide Arena and often leads to fans standing in line for three hours before the game to capitalize on a great value.

Southern/NCAA: Southern University and the NCAA teamed up to offer a special "Take a Kid to the Game" promotion. Any fans who purchased a full-price ticket to the Southern-Arkansas-Pine Bluff game received one free ticket for kids ages 3-12.

Concessions
Atlanta Thrashers/Hawks: Fans attending Atlanta Thrashers/Hawks games at Phillips Arena can purchase 64 oz. adult beverages for approximately $8 in the food court area of the adjoining CNN Center.

Miami Heat: The Miami Heat are offering a Monday Night Madness promotion where fans can purchase a 16 oz. Pepsi and a box of popcorn for $1 apiece. Couple that with a $5 ticket offer and the Miami Heat have created a real value-driven game experience!

Entertainment
Indiana Pacers: The Indiana Pacers offered its fan base a free 75-minute Blues Traveler concert outside the Conseco Fieldhouse prior to the team's opening night game against the Boston Celtics.

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Brian Gainor is the founding editor of PartnershipActivation.com, a site that identifies best practices in the sports marketplace. Brian can be reached at bgainor@partnershipactivation.com.

Questions? Comments? SportsBiz@cnbc.com

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