On Monday evening, the Dallas Stars hosted the Phoenix Coyotes in their second game of the season at American Airlines Center. The announced attendance — meaning tickets distributed, not fans inside the arena — was 6,306 spectators … or, as you can see, 6,305 spectators and one Cuba Gooding, Jr.
It was the smallest regular-season crowd the Stars have ever had in that building, drawing ridicule from TSN SportsCentre and the expected jabs from the Make It Eight crowd in Canada. Of course, the majority of them ignored the mitigating circumstances: The Texas Rangers playing in the ALCS and an oddly timed 5 p.m. start on a holiday.
That said: The Stars' attendance has been a concern for the last two seasons. Large sections of empty seats are visible on Center Ice for nearly every weeknight home game, in that so-sparsely-attended-as-to-be-distracting way they are the Coyotes and were for the Atlanta Thrashers (R.I.P.)
So what gives?
The Stars averaged 15,073 tickets distributed per gam...