Since the takeover of the Freeman group and the ascension of Tom Cigarran, the marketing department has been overdrive for this team. I’m a big fan of imagery and viral ads. And face it folks, the Preds are putting on a clinic on how to market a team. And with guys like Shea Weber, Pekka Rinne, Mike Fisher, Blake Geoffrion, and Ryan Suter… marketing the team has been easier over the last year.
One of the biggest questions this franchise will be answered at the end of this year- Can the Predators hold onto their marquee talent? This has been on everyone’s mind over the last few months, and will be until three contracts are signed. The marketing and pushing of players will have to be careful to avoid upsetting fans should the guys not be re-signed.
But there is one question- why is Ryan Suter being pushed more than the other members of the “Big Three”?
For those of you who do not know me, my company works very close with the Preds on the merchandise side. We take a lot of cues from their marketing. It’s hard not to notice the Wisconsin born defender on the posters instead of the guy I refer to as Captain Hammer.
To illustrate this, check out the first jersey promo poster. Note, Weber was not signed yet at this time… But Rinne was.
And a ticket ad released later in the summer. Shea was signed at the time of the release of this one.
To be fair, Rinne spends his summer in Finland sipping Paulaner beer by the liter. Weber was most likely up in B.C. during this time, and Suter was just down the road in… Wisconsin?
Easily my favorite poster/ad of the summer, check out this one with the likes of Weber, Rinne, Suter, and Legwand. (Leggy looks rough, but I like including him in these promos; to my knowledge this is one of the few times he’s been on one of these)
I wouldn’t mind seeing them put out one more before the season with all four of them, plus Hornqvist, Kostitsyn, Erat, and Fisher. It’s about embracing the likabilty of this team; a bunch of tough sons of guns who get the job done.. But now, IN GOLD!
But right, why would the team decide to put Suter on more material this season? Out of the holy trinity, he’s possibly the most likely to depart. Is it for recognition? Or is something else in the works? Maybe gold makes Pekka look too Scandinavian?
As long as it’s for his own betterment and we the fans don’t get let down by a low-ball contract offer that allows one of the best pure defenders in the league at age 26 to walk away right as the team is on the cusp of doing something special… I’m ok with it. But I believe if you push the heck out of an athlete, you better be prepared to keep him.