While some sports teams are having trouble selling playoff tickets, the Seattle Seahawks most certainly do not have that problem. If you’ll recall in January, the Seahawks caused a bit of a kerfuffle when they did what many other sports teams do when they want to ensure loyal fans are in the stadium on game day: they placed a regional restriction on tickets sales. Only people with billing addresses Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Alaska, Hawaii and Montana (and British Columbia) were allowed to purchase tickets to the NFC Championship Game against the San Francisco 49ers.
Niners fans grumbled over the not-too-uncommon practice, but the Denver Broncos employed a similar tactic for the AFC Championship Game, while the Oklahoma City Thunder have been doing it for years. Thus, most people accept such restrictions, and move on to secondary ticket sites. Well, except for one butthurt Nevada man, John E. Williams III, who decided to sue the Seahawks and the NFL for “unconstitutional” practices:
The lawsuit argues in part that because CenturyLink Field — misidentified in court documents as Quest Stadium or Quest Field — was publicly funded, the restriction was illegal and violated the Federal Consumer Fraud Act.
“This selective process is contrary to the spirit of the NFL, and contrary to public accommodation; however, it is utilized at will by teams in the NFL, including the Seahawks,” the lawsuit reads.
Williams is seeking $40 million in damages, which sounds totally reasonable.