A closed Canberra Stadium will cost the Raiders $4 million if the fan ban stays in place for the rest of the NRL season.
Raiders chief executive Don Furner says then all 16 clubs will need the NRL's financial help - but the league could struggle to do that for all of them.
Coronavirus induced uncertainty hit the Raiders' crowd for their season opening win over the Gold Coast Titans at Canberra Stadium on Friday night.
They went from expecting 15,000 to turn up - which would've been a record for hosting the Titans - to 10,610 coming through the gates.
But that financial hit will pale compared with having to play games in front of empty stands.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison advised on Friday any non-essential gatherings of greater than 500 people should be cancelled indefinitely from Monday onwards.
That means the Raiders' next scheduled home game - against St George Illawarra in round three on March 26 - could be empty.
Canberra would normally pocket about $70,000 per game, plus the Raiders would also have to refund tickets, members and corporate hospitality.
Not to mention the cost of hiring Canberra Stadium.
Furner estimated it would cost them $1 million for every two or three games they were in lockdown.
The Raiders will meet with the government on Monday to discuss those details, while Morrison will hold further meetings on Sunday as well.
MORE CANBERRA SPORT
"A normal game we'd net $60-$70,000 after costs. But we'd have to refund members tickets, gate tickets, people who'd bought corporate hospitality," Furner said.
"I reckon about $300-$400,000 a game. So say we had no crowds for one game, no crowds for another game and all of a sudden it's over a million bucks roughly. If you refund everybody.
"That would've hurt us [Friday] night financially, definitely, because we were tracking for 15,000 with pre-sales.
"We've got the Dragons in two weeks, if that's the same, that's a really big drawer so it's going to be financially [tough] for everybody.
"It's going to be weird for one. It's going to be financially troubling."
The Raiders have 11 home games remaining, including one in Wagga Wagga in round six.
If the worst-case scenario was to happen and the gates remained locked for the entire season then that adds up to a massive cost in the vicinity of $4 million.
So say we had no crowds for one game, no crowds for another game and all of a sudden it's over a million bucks roughly.Don Furner
All 16 NRL clubs would face similar losses. That's when Furner hoped the league would step in.
NRL boss Todd Greenberg vowed on Friday to keep every club afloat, but if the coronavirus forces a season-long shutdown that could prove massively expensive.
"That's when you'd have the rescue package. You'd hope that the NRL will come forward. [But] they can't save 16 clubs," Furner said.
"The cost wouldn't be there if you had no one coming through the gate, but nor would the revenue.
"But you've still got to pay the players, you've still got to pay the staff. It's hard to fathom what would happen.
"As far as I understand insurance doesn't cover it."
NRL ROUND TWO
Saturday: Canberra Raiders v New Zealand Warriors at Eden Park, 3pm.
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