Eric Staal takes full-page ad in North Carolina newspaper to apologize to fans, ask them back

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The National Hockey League is taking out newspaper advertisements across North America this week, apologizing to fans, asking for their business and reminding them why they love the game. (“The flash of the red light”, “the sound of the siren”, “the way the building shakes when the home team scores” … OK, we get it: Attend an NHL game, achieve orgasm. Sold, Mr. Bettman!)

There’s one such ad running in the News & Observer’s Carolina Hurricanes preview section on Friday, along with another full-page “counterpoint” from an NHL player: Hurricanes captain Eric Staal.

See a larger image here. The text, if you’re having trouble:

“As an athlete, there is something very special about hearing the roar of your home crowd. I’ve been lucky enough to hear my home fans during a Stanley Cup Final and an All-Star Game. And it’s hearing your voices that I missed the most during the lockout.”

(Ed. Note: Especially when those voices opted not to boo him mercilessly for his 5-point, minus-13 October last season.)

“On behalf of my Carolina Hurricanes teammates, I am sorry for the frustration caused to you by the work stoppage.”

“We are focused on winning back your support, through commitment on the ice and in the Triangle community. While I can’t guarantee a win every night, I can say that our team will hustle for every face off, every goal and every game.”

(Ed. Note: So no Guaranteed Win Nights in Raleigh? By the way, you can tell a center authored the because hustling on “face offs” is mentioned before scoring.)

“I am proud to call North Carolina my home, an I want to give you every reason to be proud of your hometown team. I want to give you a reason to roar again.”

“Thank you for your support.”

Are other NHL players doing this in other cities? Is this an NHLPA initiative? Because the union did this back in 1994 during the lockout, or something similar.

s/t Jamie Kellner for the ad.

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