Last week the NHL broke a new advertising campaign titled "My NHL". Shortly after, Martha Burk, chairwoman of the National Council of Women's Organizations, said the ad was offensive to women and was trying to sell sex and violence.
"The woman is dressed provocatively and when she asks the player if he's ready, it's a double-entendre in my view," Burk said in an interview. "She's in the ad as a groomer, a sex object. "The commercial is clearly selling sex and violence and the last image in that commercial is a young boy watching this, so he's clearly the customer they're after, or it's a misguided attempt to draw in families," Burk said. "The ad is just gratuitous."
Dose.ca doesn't see the ads as sexist but still has nothing nice to say about the ads.
The ad opens in some pseudo-kung fu dojo with a Sun Tzu quote. A topless Hockey Player actor sits with impeccable posture as a female spiritual mentor/trainer dressed in a classy bedtime ensemble approaches from behind and says, “Ready?” She helps him with his pads and generic “NHL” jersey. Cue the melodramatically serious music and beating of war drums that would make Ridley Scott blush. The martial arts warrior theme isn’t even the worst thing about this abomination. Have you ever heard of a league trying to sell itself by using fake players? It’d be like if the trailer for The 40-year-old Virgin had the Canadian Tire Guy acting out Steve Carell’s parts. On a spaceship. Doesn’t Gary Bettman think Jarome Iginla can sell hockey to Americans? The NBA has been using its fans to sell pro hoops since players wore the hard-court equivalent to Daisy Dukes — “It’s Faaaaaaaaantastic!” The PGA has a clever bunch of ads using its top golfers to sell the game with the “These guys are good” tagline. Now the NHL is using fake hockey players. Add to that NHL.com looks like it’s stuck in 1997, the best hope of attracting new fans is the game itself. The league should have saved itself the trouble and just hired the folks who make Nike’s hockey ads. No disrespect to Burk, but we don’t see “My NHL” as offensive or sexist — it’s just plain stupid.
Their biggest issue is that the ads don't even feature real hockey players...they use actors. You'd think that with the player's strike/lockout last year, these guys would have had nothing better to do than show up for a commercial. View the ad here. (Winmedia)