Whinery: Why Sporting Kansas City is the Best Team in Town

Had the privilege of attending Saturday’s Sporting KC game with one of the owners, Patrick Curran, and got some insight into why they are undefeated and the BEST professional team in Kansas City.

“Sporting starts and ends with the fans” Curran says.

And after touring the facility, I agree.

More money was spent per seat at Livestrong Sporting Park than Dallas’ Cowboys Stadium and it shows. This fan-centered philosophy of the ownership is what sets Livestrong apart from say, Arrowhead.

How does Sporting take care of the “average” fan?

Anyone can go to sportingmembership.com, fill out a small form and be eligible for a FREE ticket to for up to three matches a year! They even built a private club for members with a great bar area and after parties following the games. Concessions are also reasonably priced throughout the Park.

And “high roller” fans willing to shell out $250 per match for Field Club tickets- which are sold out for the season- get taken care of in a way Chiefs fans paying a similar price can only dream of.

For example, there’s a sit down dining area with real food.

Saturday it featured salmon, fettucini, hummus as well as the more traditional stadium treats like nachos and brats. There’s also an open bar all included in the ticket price, and you get to see the players take the field and watch post game interviews.

What do you get at Arrowhead for that price? Not much.

You still get the privilege of paying nine bucks for a 12 ounce beer. Which was OK during the “King Carl” Peterson era when the Chiefs were exciting and contenders year after year. Before the mediocre, $24 million under-the-salary-cap team we’ve got now.

And don’t even get me started on the Royals.

However I don’t hold their management as responsible as the Chiefs. That’s because until there is true revenue sharing and a hard salary cap, small market teams like the Royals – unless they’re blessed with another owner like Ewing Kaufman – will continue to be little more than farm clubs for the Yankees and Red Soxes of the league.

Can you imagine how good the Royals would be if we could afford to KEEP the players brought up through their system?

Of course, the 800 pound gorilla in the room for the Royals, Chiefs and Sporting is where their owner’s live.

Everyone who owns Sporting lives in the Kansas City area and were at the game Saturday night. The owners of the Chiefs and Royals don’t live here, are not a part of the Community and I think that matters.

Curran added at the end of a match leaving Sporting with the best record in the league at 6-0; “This is the team we wanted to bring to Kansas City, a team the fans can be proud of.”

Judging by the fan intensity throughout the game, I say, Mission Accomplished!

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29 Responses to Whinery: Why Sporting Kansas City is the Best Team in Town

  1. kansas karl says:

    what about hockey?
    the Mo Mavericks are in the playoffs and Ind center is a great place to see hockey.

  2. the dude says:

    Go Sporting!
    That is all.

  3. Hearne says:

    Point well taken, Kansas Karl but…
    At some point you have to draw the line between big time professional sports and minor league and/or junk sports like arena football, small time hockey, indoor soccer and the like.

    At least in this country.

    Which isn’t to say they can’t be entertaining for the few but there’s no comparison to the investment Sporting and it’s owners have made and are continuing to make as Major League Soccer continues to grow and advance.

  4. legendaryhog says:

    Beers
    Are $8.50 at Livestrong. sooo…ya. Thanks owners. Nice that you got this douche to scratch your balls though…

  5. Superfreq says:

    Agree on SKC
    As a Sporting STH, this article is the truth. Think fan involvement of the 90’s Chiefs with the overall success of the late 70’s Royals and you have the current team at LiveStrong. All those teams had ownership who wants to win.

    Like the Royals of now, this Sporting team has a young nucleus and the team has been signing extended contracts with. Unlike the Royals, they will see the post-season again this year. If you are a KC sports fan who wants the best return on money spent you cannot go wrong with a Saturday night match at LiveStrong watching this club.

    Go Sporting!

  6. Jim says:

    Yawn
    Sporting being the “winning” franchise in KC is a bit like being the tallest midget in a room. Go downtown and take a poll. Ask 100 random people to name (2) SKC players. I’ll take a swag at 85% not being able to. ‘Nuff said.

  7. the dude says:

    Yawn back atcha Jim
    Just go back to the K and scratch yer balls in the upper deck or jag off for all anyone cares, it’s not like anyone is up there to watch or care.

    We’ll enjoy a good team at a stadium that actually has people attending the games.

  8. PB says:

    Glad
    They’re doing so well and that fans are enjoying it. Like the stadium as I went out there for the free exhibition against Rockhurst and although I know I would have fun if I ever attended a real game, much like with the T-Bones, the entertainment factor is just not enough for me when it comes to watching live sports. I need some investment in the on-field product and minor league sports or in this case Major League Soccer, just doesn’t do enough for me to care about the game (match?) itself. Not Sporting or soccer’s fault, more my ignorance and ambivalence to the sport.

    Despite me not being hater, still am not in agreement that this sport will ever take off in this country and attain near the level of popularity as he football, baseball, basketball and even hockey. Sure it does great in smaller markets like KC, Portland, SLC and Columbus that are starved for winning professional franchises, but until it can move the Yankees, Giants, Knicks or Rangers off the back page of NY papers, it will struggle to go beyond niche spectator sport in this country. Keep in mind that I recall the first renaissance of US pro soccer when Pele, Chinaglia and Beckenbauer were selling out Giants Stadium and that league (NASL) ended up folding. The MLS probably won’t suffer that same fate as I think they’ve realized it’s not wise to head-to-head with the big sports in big markets and have carved out a nice, solid hold with soccer-loving Americans.

  9. Hot Carl says:

    I’m a season ticket holder and really enjoy my time at Livestrong. It’s great that we’ve got a successful pro team but this statement is ridiculous: “Concessions are also reasonably priced throughout the Park.” LIvestrong is just as big a rip-off when it comes to concessions as the Chiefs or Royals. Beers are $9 and a Pepsi is $4.75. Hell, my kid wanted some dippin’ dots and I paid $5.25 for about a Dixie cup’s worth of the crap. However, it is what it is. Everything else about Livestrong and Sporting is great. I’ll take this team over the boobs at Arrowhead and the K any day of the week.

  10. Jim says:

    Typical Dude
    Make one comment about the LACK of popularity that professional soccer enjoys in this country and the “faithful” freak out. FYI – I’m in the majority of Americans, Dude. That’s a fact not a derogatory statement. I’m not even saying I don’t enjoy watching the occasional soccer game. But, let’s face it. In the big picture, soccer ranks somewhere just below the WNBA and just above figure skating.

    BTW – If you think I’d pay $25 to park, $8 for a beer, $5 for a soda or $100 a ticket to watch the product that the Royals or Chiefs have put on the field in the last 15 years you’d be mistaken. I prefer to jag-off at home for free.

  11. Blackjack says:

    Funny
    How so many people feel threatened by the success of soccer in this country. Well, get used to it and get with the times, otherwise you can continue the futility of only rooting for the Royals and Cheifs and get left behind in this town.

    The few haters that are left keep making derogatory comments, yet LSP continues to be sold-out at 18K+ every weekend

  12. Cliffy says:

    Did you even read Jim’s comment, Blackjack? Like him, I don’t “hate” soccer. I just don’t give a damn about it. I haven’t been to Livestrong yet. I hear it’s great and I’d like to make it out there sometime. But I don’t give a damn about the team or the game. When they talk about SKC on the radio I change channels. When Donnelly writes about a game here I never click through. Well, actually, I never click through on any of his stuff. I’m glad people love this team. I’m not a hater. I just don’t care.

  13. 1%Harley says:

    BlackJack, soccer brings back too many bad memeries
    from skool
    when ……………………………………………… I waznt ever picked to play on the team
    and
    had to sit alone.
    Where do you think all these personalities came from? They were my frends when
    no
    one else…………………….would play with me.
    Are you related to black barbie?

  14. Superfreq says:

    Jim, your big picture
    2011 – 2012 Avg NBA attendance = 17239
    2011 – 2012 Avg NHL attendance = 17455
    2012 – present Avg MLS attendance = 19480

    Now I don’t know what figure skating performances & WNBA games you’re attending, but I doubt it’s in that number range. Right now, MLS is out averaging two leagues that have been around 30+ more years than it. If you want to speculate further and see an increase in multi-ethnic cultures population numbers gaining in the US (where soccer / futbol) is the main sport to follow, than I would opine that these figures will continue.

  15. Writers Guild says:

    This comment above
    is way to funny. I ………cant……………take………………….it. Bwaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

  16. harley says:

    skc is a booming deal
    I never realized how big skc was til my cousins told me they go to every game. They love it. Its sold out on a
    regular basis and they are doing well financially. I think the new stadium has made a huge difference
    and they say the “hooligans” that keep the constant noise up make the game fun.
    I went to one of the games at the old stadium and was bored to death. I’ll try to make it out to the
    new stadium this season…with a great stadium and a team thats undefated the cerner people have
    struck gold again.

  17. REAL Harley says:

    I will not be attending any skc games
    had to slurp one too many rando dudes at the Royals game and my sluper is all slurped out.

  18. 1%Harley says:

    jesus, god, Im as bad as Craig
    “I never realized how big skc was til my cousins told me they go to every game. They love it. Its sold out on a
    regular basis and they are doing well financially.”

    I cant even
    write about soccer without ……….referencing pursonal …….welth.

    Me: I love soccer, so do my cousuns, they make a lot of money.

    Craig: The Royuls are going to suck all season, no pitching anywhere to be found, Im a star, I got black barby to come back to me. Again.

    Im pituful. And now they all know my deep dark secrets.

    I really do need to go away. How do I try to fake them out all day then show up as the real me, the me me and act like I havent been here. God, Im an asshat.

  19. bschloz says:

    2 tickets sold to you
    For $500 you can get 2 buffets at Hollywood Casino , gamble $400 on the tables….and go catch a show at Glazers. win win win

  20. harley says:

    1% loser…let me help you read the comment
    not only are you destitute.. If you read the sentence…which i know for a low life it’s hard…
    the reference was to the team….doing well financially.
    I understand you can’t understand intelligent conversations…and you’re under your
    third or fourth name now…which is fine..
    but please read. If you’re like the other diaper wearing/depends dependent men on here
    I will allow that as an excuse…but probably need to get some readers for those aging
    eyes. I’m sure you have some swince you have to read the fine print at mcdonalds during
    the morning breakfast with the4 seniors club.
    Also…please don’t get too excited.wouldn’t want you to keel over from a heart attack…
    because this has got to be the highlight of a very big day for an old guy who probably can’t
    even walk from the sofa to the refrigerator without getting winded…hahaha

  21. Jim says:

    Facts are Facts, Superfreq
    The “scoccer people” have been saying for 30 years that the sport is going to explode in the USA. Hasn’t happened. Attendance figures mean nothing except to the owners of the teams. Do you see NBC, ABC, ESPN or FOX lining up to throw billions of dollars in television contracts to MLS? Soccer just doesn’t have the appeal to the masses like the other professional sports. If there was this vast popularity, the networks would be cashing in on the advertising dollars. Why do you think the Royals can suck ass for 20 years and still put 100’s of millions of dollars in their coffers? Ditto for the Chiefs. Where are all the soccer “stars” (sans David Beckham) doing national commercials?

    Don’t get me wrong. I have absolutely nothing against soccer. I’m an occasional viewer and played indoor for 10 years. Had a blast until my old body started taking a beating. It’s just not the phenomenon outside of a minority group of rabid fans. When was the last time you sat on a bar stool and talked about soccer? Soccer!

  22. PB says:

    Attendance
    2011 – 2012 Avg NBA attendance = 17239
    2011 – 2012 Avg NHL attendance = 17455
    2012 – present Avg MLS attendance = 19480

    While those figures are notable, it’s not like we’re comparing apples to apples here as the MLS plays only 34 regular season games as compared to the 82-game seasons of the NBA and NHL. Having just 17 home games (with many of those on weekends) in a smaller league, makes each game more of an event and more likely to sellout than a Tuesday game between two NBA also-rans.

    Not lumping you in, Superfreq as you brought up some great points, especially about the growing ethnic population going forward, but once again, an oversensitive Soccerhead or two just can’t accept any objective dialogue about their beloved sport w/o a call to arms against all of us supposed “haters”.

    As most of us “haters” have already noted, we’re happy for Sporting’s success and are looking forward to attending a game there, but before all the Soccerheads get too carried away, just remember that becoming a bigtime sport will eventually bring with it, the same sort of fan fickleness that plagues every other sport. When the novelty of the new stadium wears off some and if the team starts to struggle on the field, fans will be as quick to bail as they are on the Royals, Chiefs or any other professional sports team.

  23. % says:

    Soccer
    I’m a season ticket holder for SKC and a big soccer fan. I kinda shrug my shoulders when other U.S. soccer fans have this confrontational attitude about the sport. I’m actually kind of glad that MLS has the below-radar status that it does on the domestic professional sports scene. It sounds a bit ridiculous, but that below-radar status makes the league feel like something I almost own in a sense, kind of like a secret that me and a few others have. The games are really enjoyable and the ticket prices are affordable. Concessions at LSP are going way up since when they opened, but since the only break in action is at half time to get beer, I don’t find myself really wanting to get much beer during the game.

    Soccer will never eclipse the four major professional sports in the United States. MLS just doesn’t gain that much traction on the national scene, which is partly because the United States’ biggest stars, with the exception of Landon Donovan, play in Europe. It’s no slight against MLS, but the quality of play is just much better across the pond.

    And U.S. soccer fans should be fine with this. Following soccer strips out many of the annoyances that come with following the NFL or NBA and such. The fact that MLS doesn’t get on SportsCenter means you don’t have to be distracted with stories about Brek Shea’s love life (like you do with A-Rod) or Teal Bunbury’s faith (like you do with Tim Tebow). And, using SKC’s ownership as an example, you have a league that seems to appreciate its following rather than most NFL teams who treat their fans and communities as nothing beyond a source of revenue. It’s nice to see SKC’s owners mingling with fans and players mingling with fans after the games, rather than what you see with NFL teams, where they go out of their way to avoid fans, with the exception of the annual call from the sales staff asking you to re-up your season ticket package for next year at a 15 percent increase in cost.

  24. PB says:

    Excellent Post
    %. Not an insider/fan like you are, but in total agreement with your thoughts. Instead of being so thin-skinned and confrontational, soccer fans should embrace their league’s current status as the team owners/league officers and seemingly some fans like yourself already have.

  25. the dude says:

    soccer fans will quit being
    confrontational when idiots quit making the same lame “nobody watches soccer der, der, it isn’t even a sport” comment.
    Last time I checked it is a real, legitimate sport that, oh, by the way, IS the #1 sport in the world.

    I am glad too it won’t become like football because then I wouldn’t want to put up with the drunken, idioit mouthbreathers that attend Chefs games.

  26. paulwilsonkc says:

    Dude, we have seats in the end zone,
    5 rows back from the field, over by where all the idiot mouthbreathers you so aptly identified, sit. The ones who come in full dress, full costume and assume their roles as celebrities in the stands. The hatchet guy, First Down Elvis, etc. This is taking some of the people who appear on KCC to a whole new level. Are you aware some of these guys have their own trading cards and sign them for little kids???
    Its amazing, no wonder its called CamaroHead.

  27. % says:

    The Dude
    Right, soccer is the No. 1 sport in the world, so why not be happy with that? Who cares if a lot of Americans think its a wimpy sport? Baseball’s the American pastime, isn’t it? A sport that consists of mostly standing around doesn’t strike me as a particularly athletic, manly endeavor. So obviously those critics of soccer in the U.S. you’re all upset about don’t have much credibility to call soccer an illegitimate sport.

  28. Superfreq says:

    Soccer
    My main contention is when people state soccer isn’t going to make it in America then compare a 17 year old league against leagues that have been around 50+ years and ingrained in American culture. That’s just being short-sighted. Do I think MLS is going to compete with MLB or NFL, nope. Do I think it can reach the numbers TV & attendance that the NBA & NHL sees in the future? Absolutely, MLS went past the point where the league itself might fold and has gotten stronger. (look at Seattle & Portland). When you see TV networks right now outbidding each other for World Cup rights in the US (Fox over ESPN), watching Fox start broadcasting EPL matches before an NFL game in the fall. Soccer will become more ingrained in the culture of the US, and eventually even MLS will be a benefactor.

    As a season ticket holder, I enjoy MLS being a niche sport that I can enjoy for relatively low cost and higher interaction with the team. If there’s an article about soccer someone seems to need to say it won’t make it. If you don’t like it whatever, I hate NASCAR but don’t feel a need to post anything about it when it’s written about. To state that soccer won’t succeed in the US though, is just not seeing the writing on the wall.

  29. Super Dave says:

    To be honest who gives a big flying fuck what is number one in the sports world. To me it is all good and should be enjoyed by all based on what they like.

    People need respect what others like to enjoy and watch.

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