By ALAN SNEL
It was two hours before Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor threw their first punches and outside T-Mobile Arena Joe Sekelsky was working over the ticket scalpers.
Scalpers were trying to unload tickets for $1,500 or $2,000 a pop but Sekelsky would have no part of it.
He was planning to wait out the scalpers and squeeze them right before the big fight and he guaranteed he would get in, along with his teenaged son, Bryan, for $500 or $600 each. Not too bad when the average ticket was selling for more than $3,000.
Sekelsky has been buying tickets on the streets at the biggest sports events — from the Daytona 500 to Super Bowls — for 35 years. And in front of the plaza that leads to T-Mobile Arena, Sekelsky was teaching his kid the tricks of the trade of getting the best deal from scalpers.
“You got tickets? What do you got? $2,500 each. That’s too much right now,” Sekelsky told a scalper.
“The prices are out of hand. Right now, the prices are hyped for the ‘Money Fight’ and they’re inflated,” said Sekelsky, wearing a gray Mayweather-McGregor T-shirt, gray shorts, red Nike sneakers and a flowery fishing hat.
Welcome to the scene before Saturday’s epic boxing match, which featured a 40-year-old undefeated boxer with a domestic violence record against a colorful, motormouth MMA star who happens to be UFC’s biggest meal ticket.
It was Mayweather versus McGregor and the ticket negotiations at T-Mobile Arena was a cross between good ol’ fashion American capitalism and a quasi-circus, where not a few negotiators were imbibing while talking prices.
It was also a festive scene, where a McGregor fan arrived via scooter, while many others donned the Irish colors.
One fight fan arrived dressed in a robe and insisted on singing Sinatra before the main event.
Hat salespeople Curtis Haywood and Hope Bellueme at the Black Cover hat stand said 90 percent of the buyers were McGregor fans.
Each hat was selling for $30.
Contact LVSportsBiz.com founder/writer Alan Snel at asnel@LVSportsBiz.com