Dallas Stars CEO Brad Alberts has said the NHL team is losing season customers due to the pre-game BLM protests but “stands by our organization’s commitment and support our players 100% to express their views.“
What these multi-millionaire sports stars fail to grasp is that their homes and neighbourhoods aren’t being destroyed. So the last thing their (former) fans – who drive past smouldering building shells where police precincts once stood or plinths with no statues atop – need is a lecture.
Fans want to watch sports to distract them from the toils and stresses of life. Not to have it thrust in their face before a whistle has been blown. The irony is that the NHL had avoided woke displays of social justice and ratings were rising as a result. Perhaps they’d drawn eyeballs from the weaker viewing numbers in NBA, MLB and NFL. Instead of heeding common sense, the NHL followed suit and have shot themselves in the foot.
The leagues and teams are well within their rights to push politics in sports but we will have no sympathy when fans abandon them. Just like any business. To risk alienating core customers through badgering is never a smart move. Did we need Gillette to demand men check their toxic masculinity? Do we need Nike to serve up messages using players who embody some of the worst aspects of team and sportsmanship?
What we don’t quite understand is why the leagues are so eager to push causes where the people they name were hardly role models in society before they became known? Drug abuse, domestic violence, armed assault, battery, sexual assault, trespassing, outstanding warrants and resisting arrest.
To top it off, the player strikes just add to the patronizing behaviour of these well-paid celebrities. To strike when fans are turning off in droves is a bit like sending emails to an ex-girlfriend after she dumped you. You might claim she is nothing without you but at some point, you realize that all of that correspondence has been directed to her junk folder.
Get woke, go broke.