The NHL announced some fairly significant news on Tuesday. Reports indicate that the league's board of governors has approved jersey ads for teams starting in 2022-23.
Jersey ads are becoming more relevant in North American sports. Recently, both the NBA and WNBA have added ads on their jerseys. Per the article above, those ads boost team revenues by roughly $150 million. If the NHL gets that type of shot in the arm, it will really help players get paid more as the game grows.
The ads will be 3-by-3.5 inches on the uniforms, which is larger than the NBA ads. However, many people noticed after Adidas released their NHL jerseys at the beginning of the partnership the amount of space on the chest of the jersey. It appeared to be foreshadowing for this very moment. Now, teams are able to begin their search for advertising partners ahead of the 2022-23 season.
For the Blackhawks, the bet is that either Fifth Third or United will step up as the primary sponsor. United Airlines stepped up as the Blackhawks' helmet sponsor for the 2021 season. Now, fans may see the United logo on the chest of Blackhawks jerseys beginning in 2022-23.
No matter who the sponsor is with the Blackhawks, the boost in revenues will be welcomed by the NHL. The sport's popularity continues to grow, but after the COVID-19 pandemic, revenues were greatly impacted. These ads could help replace some of that lost revenue while adding a consistent revenue stream for the future.