Lights are staging open practices at Kellogg-Zaher Soccer Complex in Las Vegas. Photo credit: Daniel Clark/LVSportsBiz.com

Lights Hope Free Practices Translate Into More Ticket Sales

By ALAN SNEL

LVSportsBiz.com

 

The Vegas Golden Knights aren’t the only pro team in town inviting fans to watch practices for free.

 

The new Las Vegas Lights FC soccer team has held practices the past two mornings in open view of their fans.

 

Lights practice Tuesday with a scrimmage against another club in front of fans. Photo credit: Daniel Clark/LVSportsBiz.com

 

It’s a good business strategy to open practices to the public because it allows fans to connect with players and the team product in an informal atmosphere.

Fans catch the Lights practice Thursday morning. Photo credit: Daniel Clark/LVSportsBiz.com

 

The Golden Knights practices were packed with fans at City National Arena before the team hit the road for a four-game swing through Nashville, Tampa, South Florida and Raleigh, NC this week.

 

On Wednesday and Thursday, the Lights’ soccer team practiced at Kellogg-Zaher Soccer Complex at West Washington Avenue and North Buffalo Drive.

Photo credit: Daniel Clark/LVSportsBiz.com

 

On Friday, practice is scheduled for 9 a.m.

 

The Lights started with about 25 fans who came out to watch Wednesday and LVSportsBiz.com saw about another 25 -50 fans for a scrimmage Thursday morning.

Photo credit: Daniel Clark/LVSportsBiz.com

 

In December, LVSportsBiz.com reported that the United Soccer League team would begin signing players.

 

Last week, the soccer club introduced five players with Las Vegas roots who were signed.

 

The expansion Lights have also signed another seven players to the pre-season roster. The team plays three pre-season games against a trio of MLS teams at Cashman Field on Feb. 10, 17 and 24.

The Lights are practicing this week and the sessions are open to the public. Daniel Clark/LVSportsBiz.com

 

The Lights hope the free practices will translate into ticket sales. The team is looking to sell out Cashman Field at 10,000 fans per game. The team is approaching 3,000 season tickets. But keep in mind, pro soccer typically attracts a big walk-up crowd, too.

Lights hope Coach Jose Luis Sanchez Sola — known as Chelis — will help attract ticket sales. Photo credit: Daniel Clark/LVSportsBiz.com

 

The Lights also have 10 players on the pre-season roster on a trial basis to see how they perform.

Photo credit: Daniel Clark/LVSportsBiz.com

 

The Lights’ regular season home-opener is March 24 at 8 p.m. at Cashman Field. The opponent is fellow Nevada USL team Reno 1868 FC. The Lights’ first regular season game will be on the road March 17 against fellow expansion team Fresno FC.

 

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Alan Snel

Alan Snel brings decades of sports-business reporting experience to LVSportsBiz.com. Snel covered the business side of sports for the South Florida (Fort Lauderdale) Sun-Sentinel, the Tampa Tribune and Las Vegas Review-Journal. As a city hall beat reporter, Snel also covered stadium deals in Denver and Seattle. In 2000, Snel launched a sport-business website for FoxSports.com called FoxSportsBiz.com. After reporting sports-business for the RJ, Snel wrote hard-hitting stories on the Raiders stadium for the Desert Companion magazine in Las Vegas and The Nevada Independent. Snel is also one of the top bicycle advocates in the country.

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