If you read the fine print though, the literature said that the full season and 26 game holders (who purchase by may 14th) are guaranteed the opportunity to purchase tickets equal to the number of seats for the skills competition and all-star game. The 12 game pack only gets "priority" for 1 or the other based on availability. (not sure how they'll decide all of that).
Here's what I was told by the ticket sales office.
1) The league takes ~6000 seats for themselves, leaving about 12k in the arena. As has been stated, the season ticket base is around 12k so no tickets go on sale to the public.
2) Full-season holders are guaranteed availability of their exact same seats for both the ASG and skills competition.
3) Based on the remaining openings, 26-gamers are guaranteed availability of the same number of seats that they have purchased, but not necessarily the same location, for both the ASG and skills competition.
4) The remainder will go to 12-game holders. They get either the ASG or the skills competition, same number of seats but not necessarily the same location.
After all of this is said and done there will probably be some leftovers, but I doubt any of them go on sale to the public.
Weren't the Thrashers also coming off a playoff season? That probably caused an increase in tickets purchased that offseason
Definitely true on that part. Although I do recall a lot of Atlanta fans complaining that their management was completely messed up in how they handled their STH's in a lot of instances over the past few years. IIRC one of the things they mentioned that hurt their retention badly is that it was more affordable in many instances for people to buy individual game tickets for their games rather then a ST plan due to the management doing so many promos.
Honestly I think the ASG is going to offset the downtick in STH's here that you would normally see after a bad season, plus add a few extras. If anything it's going to move a ton of the 12 game packs up to full or 26 games.