Five weeks from tomorrow, the eyes of the sports world will be on Portland.
On Oct. 18, LeBron James makes his debut as a member of the Los Angeles Lakers, which also marks his first game playing in the Western Conference, and thanks to the vagaries of the NBA schedule, it just so happens to come against the Blazers at Moda Center.
Obviously, it's a big game—one might argue that, from a historical perspective, it's might be the biggest regular season game in Portland's history. And as you might imagine, if you want to see the game in person, well, it's going to cost you.
Alas, when tickets went on sale Monday, fans were gobsmacked: The cheapest nosebleed seats were going for $147.
The second-most expensive ticket for a non-Lakers game is against the reigning champion Golden State Warriors, on Dec. 29, are between $62-$431.
For comparison, the Blazers' second home game, against the returning LaMarcus Aldridge and the San Antonio Spurs, are $23 for the cheapest seats.
The high prices for opening night are effectively the result of a perfect storm, according to Blazers spokesperson Michael Lewellen.
"The pricing for tickets is high because the demand is unprecedented due to opening night, a huge rivalry game and LeBron James' debut with his new team," Lewellen says.
In 2013, the Blazers' ticket policy changed to a dynamic pricing system that takes an array of factors into account when setting prices, which are adjusted as the game draws closer.
Lewellen would not confirm whether the opening night game is the most expensive regular-season game ever. But another team spokesperson, Collin Romer, pointed out that the Blazers currently hold the NBA record for most consecutive opening home-game victories at 17. So if you're going to beat LeBron, this is the time to do it.