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With brokers, one can go broke

Tickets to the Michael Jordan-Magic Johnson show, also known as the 1991 NBA Finals, are being sold for $125 to $1,250 by ticket brokers. Those tickets have a face value of $27.50 to $106. And if you want to sit near regulars Jack Nicholson and Arsenio Hall, you will have to pay $2,000 to $2,500 for courtside seats, which have a face value of $475.

Chicago-area ticket brokers charged $300 to $1,000 for tickets to the first two games of the finals at Chicago Stadium.

Although the prices are high, so is the demand for the 17,505 tickets.

Ticket brokers say they get the tickets from season-ticket holders from whom they have been purchasing tickets all season. That provides an established line of people that they can obtain tickets from in a crunch.

Whereas the brokers are licensed to sell tickets, it is illegal to sell tickets at the Forum, and the parking lot there is patrolled by uniformed and plainclothes Inglewood, Calif., policemen and private security guards.

Lakers thrive in openers

The Lakers have won Game 1 in their last four playoff series, 11 of their last 13 series. The last time the Lakers won a Game 1 and then lost the series was in the 1986 Western Conference finals against Houston.

Tight rims and color scheme

Chicago coach Phil Jackson said the Forum isn't conducive to good shooting because the yellow and orange color scheme is distracting and the rims are tight.

Chicago shot 42.4 percent in a 99-86 loss at the Forum on Feb. 3, making 38 of 86 attempts.

"I think the mustard yellow is a little disconcerting to the eye, and it's hard to shoot," Jackson said. "The rims are tight. The players always complain that the rims are tight."