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It will cost more to watch Lakers

Ticket prices go up for the third year in a row. Vujacic, Turiaf haven't signed offer sheets.

July 09, 2008|Mike Bresnahan | Times Staff Writer

The Lakers increased ticket prices across the board for a third consecutive season, a relatively unsurprising action after the team paid almost $5 million in luxury taxes on last season's payroll and faced a larger tax hit next season.

Courtside seats were raised from $2,300 to $2,500 a game, an 8.7% hike that moved beyond the typical annual increase of 4.5%.

Seats in six lower-level sections between the baskets -- 101, 102, 110, 111, 112 and 119 -- were raised from $230 to $245, a 6.5% increase that also topped the team's normal action on such seats.

The league average for ticket-price increases is usually 3% to 4%.

Other tickets in the lower bowl at Staples Center will be $210, $147, $110, and $85, increases of 4.8% to 6.3%.

Tickets in the upper bowl were raised slightly to $40 or $28, not including 500 seats that are a league-mandated $10.

Meanwhile, today was the first day the Lakers could officially announce a free-agent signing, but they hadn't agreed to terms with any players as of Tuesday night.

The Lakers hope to re-sign restricted free agents Sasha Vujacic and Ronny Turiaf but don't want to stray too far over the luxury-tax threshold, which will be $71.15 million next season. The Lakers have already committed $75.1 million for only 10 players and will pay a dollar in taxes for every dollar they are over the threshold.

Vujacic and Turiaf continued to pursue offers from other teams but have not signed offer sheets, which the Lakers would then have seven days to match.

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mike.bresnahan@latimes.com

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