Montreal

Tickets to watch the Habs vs. Leafs Game 6 in Montreal could cost fans as much as $12K

As some COVID-19 restrictions ease, fans are being allowed back into arenas to watch NHL playoff games, but there's a new barrier to attending: the cost. Resale sites are selling tickets to the Habs vs. Leafs Game 6 in Montreal, but only in pairs. So a ticket listed for $1,500 will set fans back double that amount.

Resale sites list pairs of tickets for Game 6 starting at $1,500 each (and you have to buy 2)

On Saturday, Montreal's Bell Centre will welcome back a limited number of fans to cheer on the Canadiens for Game 6 of their playoff series against the Maple Leafs. (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press)

While some excitement is brewing now that fans will be able to watch the Habs vs. Leafs game in person at the Bell Centre in Montreal, the cost of tickets on resale sites is a bitter pill for those on a budget.

On Ticketmaster, the most expensive tickets for Saturday night's game cost $12,000 each. 

Adding to the financial barrier is the fact that the tickets are only being sold in pairs. That means a night out for two could cost a whopping $24,000 for a view in the 100 section close to the blue-line.

While the $12,000 price tag is an outlier, there are no tickets currently on offer on StubHub or Ticketmaster that cost less than $1,500 each.

Game 6 will be the first time fans are welcomed back to the Bell Centre to cheer on the Canadiens this year, as COVID-19 restrictions meant live sporting events had to be played without fans. But as case numbers decrease, regions across the country are easing restrictions. 

The most expensive resale tickets for the game are listed at $12,300, which includes $2,300 worth of fees. (CBC)

Limited availability 

As of today, the Quebec government is allowing indoor venues to host up to 2,500 people divided up into independent zones of 250.

For the game, the arena seating will be divided into 10 distinct zones, each with a separate entrance and washrooms.

At the Bell Centre, 2,500 people would account for about 12 per cent of the venue's capacity.

This helps explain the inflated ticket prices.

According to the team, tickets were sold in pairs with the intention that the people sitting together would be from the same household.

Each pair of seats will be at least two metres apart from any other group.

While tickets for the game were made available exclusively to season ticket holders, it's not clear how much they originally cost. 

LISTEN | Canadiens and Leafs face off in playoffs for the first time since 1979:

As the Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs face off in the Stanley Cup playoffs for the first time since 1979, CBC Montreal reporters Jonathon Montpetit and Antoni Nerestant break down the historic rivalry between the two teams. 28:10

Teams donate seats for front-line workers

Last week, Alberta issued an exemption for 12 health workers to attend Game 1 between the Oilers and Jets as a gesture of thanks.

"This is just a small token of Alberta's appreciation for the tireless work protecting Albertans over these very difficult 15 months from all of our health-care workers," said Alberta Premier Jason Kenney.

Some fans have suggested the Canadiens could have done something similar. The team did not immediately return a request for comment asking if they had considered donating tickets to front-line workers.

Donating tickets to health and other front-line workers has become increasingly common for NHL teams during the pandemic.

The New Jersey Devils donated 10,000 tickets for the 2020-21 season to front-line health-care workers "as a show of appreciation and support to those fighting the deadly COVID-19 pandemic."

In March, the Pittsburgh Penguins welcomed 100 essential workers to a home game against the Buffalo Sabres as part of its Essential Workers Salute contest.

The St. Louis Blues also reserved tickets to their first home game of the season for health workers. The game included a "special dedication puck drop honouring front-line workers and the heroic work they have done in our community over the last 10 months."

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