On Saturday, I took my first visit to the NHL Powered by Reebok Featuring XM with Special Appearance by Starbucks Store, located on 1185 Avenue of the Americas, at the corner of 47th Street in Manhattan. I walked through its doors about three hours after the Dallas Stars continued their assault on history against the Detroit Red Wings with a Game 5 victory at the Joe.
Yes, they're merely pushing product. No, there isn't a hell of a lot of room on that platform, what with those Spinal Tap Stonehenge-sized Stanley Cups (video) in the display. But there were still four teams in the playoffs as of Saturday evening, and one of them isn't represented in the first sight that greets you upon entering the NHL's official retail home (even though there are other Dallas items to be found inside the store). Which has to be a little frustrating if you're a Stars fan.
Did the good folks at the NHL Store believe, like many others, that there was a better chance the Flyers would rally in the conference finals than the Stars? Eh, maybe. But it's a Final Four, not a Final Three; and these Flyers, Wings and Penguins jerseys are still on display Monday morning, even after Philly bowed out yesterday afternoon. Jonathan Switcher frowns at this clear case of mannequin neglect.
Later this week, I'll have a full, photo-filled review of my visit to the NHL Store -- a trip that featured some wacky merchandise, some constructive criticism and at least one great story about Claude Lemieux. Good times.
UPDATE 2:45 P.M.: The NHL e-mailed us and passed along this info: "That front display (which only hold 3 mannequins) is on a constant rotation. During the time of year when there are only 4 teams still competing, it can look like someone is being left out, but that is definitely not our intention." Good to know, but there should have been some kind of representation for the Stars. Heck, even a framed photo of Mike Modano for the ladies would do.