Bishara, in a must-read for professional-basketball junkies, chronicles his journey as he sees 25 National Basketball Association games without paying face value for the tickets.
The author, a diehard NBA fan, understands the frustration that so many people feel when they see the exorbitant prices that teams charge for tickets. His debut serves as a guide for fans who want to find the best deals on tickets but don’t have experience dealing with scalpers or scouring the Internet. Bishara takes readers game by game as he explains how he acquires his ticket for each of 25 games, lists how much he paid, and compares that price to the ticket’s face value. However, these stories not only provide practical advice for getting the best bargains, but also offer plenty of entertainment. Whether he’s scoring free tickets from a local bartender or getting ripped off by a scam artist in Chicago, the author’s love for the game of basketball and for bargain hunting is always apparent. The stories don’t always end with a ticket purchase, either; Bishara scopes out each city’s nightlife and each arena’s beer selection and provides smart commentary on the state of each franchise. He writes in a conversational style, reporting on every aspect of his experience as a helpful friend might, and breaks up the stories with interviews with a veteran scalper and the head of a dynamic-pricing software company. Both interviews are incredibly interesting, and offer readers insiders’ perspectives on two very different sides of the ticket market. Although Bishara writes from the point of view of an average fan, he also displays a thorough understanding of how ticket pricing works and how that market is evolving. He also provides a valuable “Reflections” chapter, in which he hands out awards for the best arena food, the most thriving scalper trade, the most attractive cheerleaders and more.
A thoroughly enjoyable read and a useful tool for any serious NBA fan.