Kings Gameday: Adventures In Marketing

Hahahahaha... oh wait... fuck. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

LA Kings (a dominant 2-1) vs. Vancouver Canucks (a pathetic 1-1-1), 7:30 PM

Fox Sports West

 

2 things that have been bothering me (OK, 1, but the other one came to me while I was writing):

1) STOP MAKING HOCKEY PLAYERS WEAR JERSEYS WHEN THEY'RE NOT PLAYING HOCKEY.

It's an ugly secret that we don't like to talk about, but: hockey jerseys make you look lame. I'm sorry, 35 year-old man, but that XXXL jersey you're sporting doesn't make you look cool. The jersey's made to fit over shoulder pads and it's made to insulate; it's not made to make you look like a fashion icon. Hockey jerseys are the 2nd lamest piece of sports attire to wear* and almost no one looks cool in one. Even if you wear it over a sweatshirt. (You know who you are.) People aren't going to see Alexander Ovechkin out of a jersey and suddenly think he's some caveman transplanted from the time of mastodons... well, they might, but the jersey isn't what identifies him as an athlete. People are going to see Sidney Crosby in an ill-fitting sweater and think, "Ha, hockey's lame as fuck." And they're right. Put hockey players in a t-shirt with their team's logo, that'll get the job done. Stop making them wear jerseys, it's embarrassing.  Especially for the goalies, and ESPECIALLY for Ryan Miller with his skinny neck.

Besides, hockey players are built as fuck: why hide that beefcake behind a jersey? Ladies and me, am I right?

(Now, you may be reading that last paragraph and thinking, "Hey, that's pretty homoerotic." My response would be: uh, yeah. It's sports; half the fun of watching sports is hearing grown men saying, "Man, I wish I had abs like that guy.")

*In order of lameness:

1) Basketball jerseys

2) Hockey jerseys

3) Baseball jerseys

4) Football jerseys

5) Soccer jerseys (the jersey looks cool; you, however, are lame as fuck)

6) Rugby jerseys

7) Jockey outfit (it's quite fetching)

2) The Foam Castle

On Wednesday night, you could feel the electricity at Staples Center. Kings fans were obviously stoked about this season and they were showing it as the clock ticked down to the start of the game. Then the Kings started a little highlight film set to music. It was a little too dramatic but nothing you wouldn't expect before a game. Then they showed Dustin Brown shooting a puck into frozen warriors, causing them to break apart in a hail of ice. The place got quieter as people began muttering, "The fuck is this shit?" instead of cheering.

And then the castle.

Oh, the castle.

I have never before been more embarrassed to be a Kings fan in my entire life, and I once watched the Kings skate around in a Burger King jersey. It's humiliating. I felt like Nelson in that episode where the Simpsons go to Shelbyville; I have to defend my team but at the same time, holy shit is my team lame. Jesus, Kings Marketing Team, what the hell are you thinking? You completely took the fans out of the game. No one said a word for almost 2 periods and I blame you for that. Pro tip: when you're trying to intimidate a team before a game, making your team walk through Eureeka's Castle beforehand is not a good idea.

Hockey is cool because it's like Motorhead: it's loud, it's fast, it's violent and it doesn't give a fuck. The Kings are marketing hockey like it's Dio: dramatic and filled with weird sets and costumes. Fuck that. You want the Kings to walk out of something, have them walk out of the wound Matt Greene suffered when he blocked a shot with his Goddamn face, right before he kept playing like it was a scratch. And see, that's really the key: hockey isn't cool because Matt Greene got hit in the face with a puck, and it's not cool because he kept playing; it's cool because he obviously didn't think it was a big deal. He's a hockey player and that's what hockey players do. What do hockey players not do? Walk out of foam castles.

You know what the best part about hockey is? The hockey. Hockey is retardedly awesome, no one needs to try to make it so. Play something heavy, show people getting fucked up, everyone's sold! It's the easiest thing in the world to market. None of this lame shit, that's football's domain. Football gets the gladiator stuff, baseball gets nostalgia, basketball gets the wonder "How do they do that?" stuff, hockey gets the "this is cool and if you don't know why you're not cool" stuff. No more lame stuff, it's annoying.

Prediction: Kings 3, Canucks 2, My Dignity 0.

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