Toronto Maple Leafs: Ads on Jerseys Are a Disgrace to the NHL

Jack Campbell #36 of the Toronto Maple Leafs makes a stop using his Warrior Ritual V1 Pro stick. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
Jack Campbell #36 of the Toronto Maple Leafs makes a stop using his Warrior Ritual V1 Pro stick. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images) /

The Toronto Maple Leafs, and every other NHL team, will be adding advertisements to jerseys starting next year.

The additional money might raise the salary cap, which would help the Toronto Maple Leafs.  

I still don’t care.

Advertising on jerseys is gross.  The NHL is a billion dollar industry, and this seems like the equivalent of begging for spare change.

Toronto Maple Leafs Jerseys Will Feature Ads

I’m probably a bit old-school in that I remain disgusted by a world where corporate greed is accepted and expected, and where advertising is ubiquitous.   I have no problem with it when it’s in it’s place, but I don’t think we need ads plastered everywhere and anywhere – there should be some limits.

I grew up in a time before the internet, when selling out was for losers, and people still at least pretended to respect the old punk rock ethos of romantic non-corporate purity. It wasn’t a joke to me.   You’d never see me with a name-brand on my chest or hat (if I ever wore a hat, which I don’t, because I’m cool and hats are not).  Our site has a lot of ads, and I guess it makes me a hypocrite, but show me someone who isn’t a hypocrite in some way, and I’ll show you a liar.  Inconsistency is the only thing that binds us all.

Nothing anyone can say can make me OK with ads on jerseys. I mean, you tune into a game, you have to watch about 400 commercials, most of them seeming to feature an extremely shady guy with a French accent imploring lower class people to waste their money and ruin their lives gambling.  Then, the arena has a stupid corporate name you can’t remember or keep straight.  Each power-play, penalty kill, headshot or injury is brought to you by another sponsor.  There are ads on the board, ads on the helmets, ads on the ice.

It’s all a bit much, and ads on jerseys are the final straw.  But, like the NHL predicted, I won’t do anything about it.  Ads on jerseys won’t affect my behavior in one single way – I’ll still watch the games, buy the tickets, argue about the team etc.  I wouldn’t buy a jersey with an ad on it, but I’m a grown-up, I’m not going to go out in public in a jersey either way.

The fact that they can do this with no consequences, and that they know that, is what makes it so insidious.

Why not just say “You know what? We’re already bleeding our fans dry, we don’t even care what kind of products we associate with, so why not at least keep one thing for ourselves?”

On one hand, since there are so many ads already, what’s one more?  But on the other hand, when is enough enough?  Could Auston Matthews double his earnings if he changed his name to Auston Chevrolet?

How long until the team sells naming rights to it’s own name?  The Toronto Maple Facebook.coms?

Hey it’s just a business, and these billionaires who pay millionaires need every last dollar they can squeeze from their (mostly) middle to lower class fans, am I rite?

I’m just sick of them trying to wring every dollar from me.  Maybe revenue is down because of the Pandemic – so what.  My revenue is down, as I’m sure yours is too.  Who’s out there for the little guy?  Nobody. The NHL exists to take money from the little guy, that much is apparent.

Next. Leafs are the NHL's Best Team at Managing Salary Cap. dark

The NHL selling ad space on jerseys is a pathetic money grab that the league should be above.  Have some pride, Gary.