The NHL rolled out its new line of "Because It's the Cup" playoffs commercials two weeks ago. In the first ad, they showcased the quirkiness of some of the fans, from The Green Men to Senatron to that incredible Paul MacLean lookalike. In the second, they showcased the intensity of the players as they try to stare down their own pregame jitters.
Ad number three is like if those two ads met, totally did it, and had a baby. This one's about the quirkiness of the players.
And people say NHLers don't have personality.
According to the NHL, "Characters" will make its debut on NBC Sports Network Wednesday night during the Buffalo Sabres/Boston Bruins game.
I can't say enough about the brilliance of opening with a high-pitched Ilya Bryzgalov saying, "It's hockey. It's only a game." What a great tone-setter.
From there, we meet the Sedins and their creepy, synchro-twin routine, the infamous mountain man headshots of Brent Burns and Greg Zanon, Jason Spezza's remarkably dweeby laugh, a little undercarriage humour from BizNasty, and Pavel Datsyuk and Teemu Selanne being as charmingly perfect as ever.
It's a good entry point for non-diehards, which, as we know, was part of the strategy this time around. These ads are supposed to feature a "welcoming entry point", and this one certainly does. (Although if they really wanted a welcoming entry point, it should have just been 30 seconds of Teemu Selanne smiling at the camera. Swoon.)
As a diehard, however, I can't help but think that there's so much more that could have gone in there, from Keslurking to Steve Ott tonguing a visor and beyond. Did the NHL go far enough? Or are there some glaring omissions?
Pass or Fail: NHL's third playoff commercial, 'Characters' .