It’s only a matter of time before ads appear on NHL hockey jerseys like they do over in Europe. In fact, the Swedes are getting even further ahead of the game by slapping ads on their goalie pads.
As part of an agreement with Head and Shoulders — a favorite of Henrik Lundqvist’s — the goaltenders for the Swedish national team will wear pads featuring the shampoo bottles during all competitions this season except for the Olympics and World Championships.
“No, it’s just a sticker on my regular leg protection. [You] don’t even notice it’s on,” said Jhonas Enroth via Aftonbladet. Along with Enroth, Magnus Hellberg and Linus Söderström will also be donning the shampoo pads when Sweden opens up the Karjala Cup Wednesday against the Czech Republic
While the unique looking pads don’t bother Enroth, one former Swedish netminder isn’t too pleased with what he sees.
“Three Crowns are the people’s team. Focus on the Three Crowns on the chest. Now the focus is on something else, [like] everyone who has dandruff,” said goaltender-turned-broadcaster Mikael Tellqvist. “If you have to advertise on the national [team uniform], I think there should be something that is genuine and that feels serious in some way.”
“You should hope that [Swedish Hockey Federation] get well paid and that the money goes for a good purpose, like hockey or youth hockey.”
We’ve seen how much ads have been creeping into the game over the last decade. From ads on the ice to virtual ads on the glass, there’s no stopping them. The NHL and leagues will find new ways to generate revenue. So if you’re someone who’s against ads on jerseys, would you be fine with something like this on player equipment?
Losing in the gold medal game is hard to do. For Sweden’s Erik Karlsson, he might be taking things a bit too much to heart.
Following the 3-0 loss to Canada, via Olympic News Service, Karlsson was asked what the silver medal means to him.
“You will see when I put it out on eBay,” the 23-year-old defenseman said.
Before you go breaking your browsers hitting refresh to look for an Olympic silver medal from Sochi, Karlsson was probably having some fun with reporters. He followed that by being a bit more serious.
“It’s obviously something that will be great to look back on and be proud of, but it will take some time before I will be able to reflect on what it means,” Karlsson said.
At Karlsson’s age, he’ll likely get another chance to win gold at the Olympics whether NHL players go in 2018 or not. Let’s not begrudge a guy for being disappointed at not winning the biggest game of his life.
Still… It might not hurt to set your Google alerts just in case a silver medal goes up for bids.
Vancouver Canucks coach, and Boston native, John Tortorella could’ve had his loyalties split in Sunday’s gold medal game between Canada and Sweden because of the number of Canucks players on both teams.
“I hope Sweden wins because I don’t think Hammer [Dan Hamhuis] is going to play judging from what’s happened and I don’t think Louie [Roberto Luongo] is going to play,” said Tortorella. “So I don’t give a [bleep] right now because they’re not playing. I just want them back here. I hope Danny [Sedin] scores two goals and [Alex] Edler gets three assists and Sweden wins so they come back feeling good about themselves because it’s going to help us. That’s all I’m concerned about right now.”
Tell us how you really feel, coach.
Dan Hamhuis has been in Canada’s lineup but not playing many, if any, minutes in games as the seventh defenseman. Roberto Luongo has been backing up Carey Price through most of the Olympic tournament. Daniel Sedin and Alex Edler, meanwhile, have been getting steady play and minutes with Sweden.
Despite the harsh words, the takeaway from this is simple: If guys aren’t going to play, Tortorella would rather have them with him in Vancouver doing workouts and practicing with the team. He just has a very colorful way of saying that is all.
Being NHL teammates on opposing teams in the Olympics can make for awkward situations. Such is the case for Colorado Avalanche forwards Matt Duchene and Gabriel Landeskog.
Those two will face each other on Sunday in the gold medal game between Canada and Sweden (7 a.m. ET on NBC). As Duchene tells Mark Kiszla of The Denver Post, they’re enemies until the game is over.
“We’ve talked a few times during the Olympics,” Duchene said. “I’ve seen him at the cafe. And we chatted. But I’m not talking to him now until after the gold medal game. He has rubbed the fact Sweden won the world championship last year in my face. And I’d like to give that back to him. Absolutely.”
Duchene hasn’t gotten quite as much ice time as Landeskog has for Sweden, but he was more of a factor against the United States winning faceoffs in Canada’s 1-0 victory in the semifinals.
You can imagine the chirping that will go on if Sweden comes away with the win, however. Holding gold at Worlds and gold at the Olympics over someone’s head (all in good fun) in the locker room is how prank wars begin.
With just two days until the gold medal game between Canada and Sweden and only hours until the bronze medal game, that doesn’t leave much time for wondering what the odds are in each game.
Online oddsmaker Bovada.lv has come through and, for entertainment’s sake, they’ve got the North American teams looking good to win against their Scandinavian opponents.
Bovada lists Canada as a 2/1 favorite to win gold against Sweden. The odds on the Swedes winning are a bit longer at 33/20.
Both teams head into the game on Sunday (7 a.m. ET Sunday on NBC) undefeated and both teams are coming off one-goal wins against rivals. Team Canada defeated Team USA 1-0 while Sweden beat Finland 2-1.
In the bronze medal game, Bovada lists Team USA as a 19/10 favorite, virtually 2/1, to beat Finland. The Finns, meanwhile, are 8/5 to beat the United States. Those two face off Saturday (10 a.m. ET on NBCSN) for the third-place hardware.
If betting on a team isn’t your thing, the over/under on number of total goals scored in each games is 4.5. With how goaltending has been all tournament, good luck betting the over.