Drink up the official NHL Stanley Cup Playoff beer tap handles and brew cans (PHOTO)

Like other protectors of trademarks, the National Hockey League has been "protective" in the past when it comes to how sponsors and licensees can use the Stanley Cup. But for the 2012 NHL Playoffs, the League loosened up: 4,000 bars across the U.S. and 2,500 in Canada will be using Molson Canadian and Coors Light tap handles, like these:

Must. Have. For. Rec. Room. Now.

Is it bad form to reach over the bar to kiss a Stanley Cup beer tap handle if your team wins a Game 7?

Better question: Would your playoff superstitions prevent you from consuming a beverage from a Stanley Cup tap handle until your team has played its last game?

To that end: Would you drink a can of beer with the Cup on it?

Molson Coors is also doing a hockey card insert during the playoffs, with 92 commemorative cards celebrating the 92 Stanley Cup champions since 1918:

Throughout the 2012 Stanley Cup® Playoffs, specially-marked cases of Molson Canadian, Molson Export and Coors Light will include commemorative cards, which highlight the championship season of every Stanley Cup winner since 1918. The program will also see limited edition Stanley Cup 473ml cans for all three brands, a milestone for a partner of the NHL to have the Stanley Cup featured on pack.

Here are the brew cans:

They also have some ... uh ... creative commercials in the works.

"The beer goggles ... ze do nothzing!

Question: Does any of this stuff influence you as a consumer? Hockey fans are a defiant bunch here in the U.S., but we're also appreciative -- give us some love and we'll probably love you back.

Are you more apt to support a brand that celebrates the Stanley Cup Playoffs?