Jai-Alai Chalk Talk Hall of Fame

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Re(1): State of the (jai alai) Nation

Posted on February 27, 2008 at 10:57:28 AM by Jim

What a nice post!

The only thing I'd say is that we know the game has changed and so have the times, but the problem I see is that SIMULCASTING has forever changed jai alai. What does that mean? Well, case in point: I very often see former jai alai fans at Orlando...the ones who used to sit in the crowd and wager on jai alai and enjoy it...they'd come all the time...just as much as I do still to this day. This was before simulcasting. Now, those same people have been converted to the horse track simulcasts, primarily, because they see the huge pools and pay-offs that often occur. Now, those same fans don't wager on jai alai, never sit in the stands, and in fact, they don't sit down, period. They just meander around, staring and looking up at monitors. Even during the Citrus tournament, I was going upstairs to wager (the 3rd floor Race Book) and there well over a hundred people up there or more.

I could not agree with you more about bringing newbies in the door. Frankly, that seems the be the only way we get new fans to jai alai, is to literally BRING them in the door ourselves! I brought my friend in, and now we got every weekend. We brought his daughter, and when she is in town, she goes with us on that weekend. People really seem to love the sport, still, but all I ever hear is "oh ya, I've heard of it...what is it?"

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