If only the Detroit Red Wings could find a superstar player at Meijer, the Grand Rapids-based retailer that will further entrench itself as the Original Six’s franchise sponsor.
The club announced Wednesday players will wear a Meijer decal positioned on the right and left sides of the helmets for the coming season, starting with this week’s 2021 NHL Prospects Tournament. Last season, the Wings advertised United Wholesale Mortgage on helmets. Adding advertisements to uniforms — a common practice in Europe, where it extends to sweaters — has added a source of revenue to offset the losses suffered during the pandemic.
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When reports of sponsorships on NHL uniforms began, Wings general manager Steve Yzerman gave the decision his backing.
“We have to be creative,” he said. “Our revenues have taken a significant hit and you’re always looking at ways to grow revenue.”
Meijer also is advertised on the backdrops the Wings use in meetings with the media. The company sponsors the Wings’ Learn to Play programs and the Wings’ Street Hockey Summer Tour. The Wings will donate $200 to Meijer’s Simply Give program for every goal scored during the 2021-22 season — so good thing Yzerman added to the team’s potential scoring power this offseason by bringing in forward Pius Suter, who projects to play in the top six along with Dylan Larkin, Tyler Bertuzzi, Jakub Vrana, Robby Fabbri and Filip Zadina.
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Other newcomers to the 2021-22 team, which begins training camp Sept. 22, include defensemen Nick Leddy and Jordan Oesterle, and goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic.
Fans attending the Dec. 18 game against the New Jersey Devils at Little Caesars Arena will receive a helmet replica holiday ornament.
Contact Helene St. James at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @helenestjames. Read more on the Detroit Red Wings and sign up for our Red Wings newsletter. Her book, The Big 50: The Detroit Red Wings is available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Triumph Books. Personalized copies available via her e-mail.