THe NHL is a league that realizes that they’ve got the best sport in town to see live. If a person sees one game within close proximity to the actual ice, it’s probable that one wouldn’t mind seeing another game in the future. But it’s unlikely that your local arena is in eyeshot of where you work, so you may put it out of mind once the final buzzer sounds. That’s why the good folks of NHL Marketing Departments have jobs.
Now I’ve already covered why the Sharks think I’m their number one fan, but let’s focus on my hometown team: the Washington Capitals. I’ve been to a few games this year, and thanks to the kind offer of MYFO’s Favorite Owner, I’ll be living large come January in the owner’s box. Why do I go to Caps games even though I’m a Flyers fan? Because it’s hockey, damn it. (Oh, and because tickets cost $10. I almost forgot.) When I see a game on the schedule that will fit with my agenda, I get some folks together and go – I’m the self-motivating type. This allows me instant puck gratification.
Oh, and it allows me to screw with the cold-calling intern from the Caps Marketing Department.
The following transcript comes loosely from the conversation I just had sitting here at my desk.
Kevin: Hello there, Redacted Name. I’m “Kevin” with the Washington Capitals. How are you today?
Hextall454: I’m doing well. What can I do for you?
(I’m not always this cordial on the phone. But I wanted to be, just in case Kevin’s last name is Leonsis.)
Kevin: Uhm. Actually, I was wondering if I could interest you in one of our great multi-game ticket packages with promotional items that we have just in time for Christmas.
Hextall454: Promotional items, you say? Go on.
Kevin: For $132, I can get you and a guest into 4 games, including one of our premium match-ups. In addition, the package comes with two baseball caps and an autographed hockey puck from any member of the Caps!
Hextall454: Intriguing. What’s a premium match-up?
Kevin: It’s a game against one of the Capitals big rivals. There are the Flyers on January 13th, the Rangers on February 10th, the Devils on the 24th, the Maple Leafs on March 1st, and the Penguins on the 9th.
Hextall454: The Maple Leafs? Really?
Kevin: Yes, sir!
Hextall454: No, you misunderstood. I was questioning the Maple Leafs. They kind of suck this year.
Kevin: Oh. Well, you don’t have to pick that one.
Hextall454: I appreciate that. What about the baseball caps? What color are they?
Kevin: I don’t know for sure, sir, but I imagine they come in the new color scheme…so, are you interested?
Hextall454: Yeah, I’m interested! Give me the Flyers game, and then any three Saturday games you have after Christmas.
Kevin: (overly excited) Great! Ok, let’s see. How about the Canadiens, Panthers, and Thrashers?
Hextall454: Fine by me!
Kevin: Ok, and which Capital would you like to have an autographed puck from? Most people pick Ovechkin.
Hextall454: I would like Brian Sutherby.
Kevin: (clearly scanning a list) Uhm, I don’t see him on my list for some reason. Wait…didn’t he get traded?
Hextall454: Did he?
Kevin: Yeah, he’s not on the team roster anymore on our website.
Hextall454: Oh. Deal’s off.