Saturday, 29 November 2014

One-Night Rebrand

This is the uniform that the Charlotte Checkers will wear tonight when they face the Milwaukee Admirals. Yes, I realize that the uniform isn't normally what the Checkers wear, and that's why I'm writing this. You see, the Checkers will promote the NBA's Charlotte Hornets in a cross-sport promotion tonight as they host the Admirals on Hornets Night presented by Husqvarna - yes, they have a game-night sponsor for this. If you know anything about me, you probably sense the disappointment I have for the Checkers franchise on this one.

I understand that the Checkers are the lesser of two professional sports franchises in Charlotte, but this is one of the dumbest things I have seen. In no way, shape, or form do the Hornets need the Checkers to help promote their brand, especially when it comes to an AHL hockey team helping them. Unless the Hornets have some sort of clause written into the lease for the arena by the Checkers that says they have to hold a Hornets night, hockey teams should not be promoting the highest level of basketball team in the state simply because they can.

According to the Checkers' release, "The jerseys, which feature Charlotte Hornets colors and primary logo on the crest along with a modified Checkers logo on the shoulders, will be available for auction immediately following the game to benefit the Checkers Charitable Foundation and the Charlotte Hornets Foundation." So not only are the Checkers helping the Hornets promote the Hornets' brand over their own, they're also raising money for the Hornets' charity. Something doesn't seem right about this.

How about some more salt to the wound, you say? Sure, we can do that. "Other Hornets Night merchandise, including hats, t-shirts, pucks and more, will be available for sale beginning with the Checkers’ Black Friday sale at their EpiCentre office and continuing throughout the game." Oh, and don't forget that "Hugo, the Hornets’ mascot, and the Honey Bees dance team" will also be at the game as well. Is this a hockey game or a basketball game? Everything points to a basketball game right now.

The game saw the Checkers get out to a 3-0 lead early in the second period before the Admirals roared back to tie the game at 3-3 at the end of 40 minutes. The third period was nothing but old-time hockey as a line brawl broke out that included a good, old-fashioned goalie fight! Charlotte's John Muse and Milwaukee's Magnus Hellberg tangled in their pads and each earned game misconducts, forcing Drew MacIntyre for Charlotte and Marek Mazanec for Milwaukee to finish the game! One things settled, the teams traded goals to make it 4-4 and appeared headed for overtime, but it was Charlotte's Phil Di Giuseppe who potted the game-winning goal with 1:30 remaining to give the CheckerHornets the win!

At the end of the day, no one will remember the jerseys in the annals of history, but the win may help the Checkers make the playoffs this season. However, whenever someone wears the CheckerHornets jersey, it may cause a double-take to figure which team that jersey is supporting. Again, the NBA needs no help promoting itself and the Checkers needn't volunteer to do so on their own accord. The Checkers shouldn't be giving up their identity for an NBA team when they could use the marketing more than the Hornets can.

But if they do, the least they could do is provide a themed jersey to the anthem singer on a theme night. She is part of the team on game night. You're better than this charade, Checkers.

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

No comments: