In a move many NHL teams are making to create more revenue amid the pandemic, the Detroit Red Wings announced Monday they will feature a United Wholesale Mortgage (UWM) logo on player helmets starting this season.
The team said the UWM logo will be on the team’s home, away, and practice helmets during the entirety of the 2021 season. It’s unclear if it will stay on the helmet beyond this season.
UWM named exclusive mortgage partner of #RedWings & Little Caesars Arena; Will feature branding on Red Wings' player helmets, along with on-ice logos, in-arena signage, and extensive digital branding.— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) January 4, 2021
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The UWM logo will replace the “Detroit Red Wings” woodmark that has been on the helmets for decades.
“The UWM decal will be positioned on the left and right sides of the helmet, and the helmet will be worn for home and away games, as well as practices throughout this season. In addition to branding on player helmets, UWM branding will also be featured with an on-ice logo at Little Caesars Arena, along with prominent dasher board and penalty box signage,” reads a statement from the team.” “Digital branding will be featured throughout the arena bowl and concourse areas. The parking garage located at 128 W. Fisher Service Drive will also be named the United Wholesale Mortgage Garage with new signage to be installed soon. UWM will also have a sponsored presence on the Detroit Red Wings Radio Network.”
Helmet ads have been resisted for years by NHL teams, the league, the players, and yes, the fans. However, with the coronavirus pandemic leaving many in search of more hockey-related revenue, what was perhaps an inevitability has been ushered into reality sooner than later.
The NHL gave teams the green light for these ads in December. The New Jersey Devils and Washington Capitals were the first teams to announce such helmet logos.
Teams are allowed to find up to two existing sponsors to put logos on helmets that match with various uniform combinations. The NHL is leaving jerseys alone, largely because it was quicker and easier to sell ads on helmets than anything else.
The American Hockey League (AHL), where Red Wings affiliate the Grand Rapids Griffins play, has been allowing such helmet ads for years.