By Barry Janoff
December 10, 2013: In anticipation of the outdoor 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series that the NHL will be staging this season, the league has joined with Dick's Sporting Goods to unveil three NHL-branded stores-within-a-store concept.
The NHL shops will be located within Dick's retail locations in Chicago, Pittsburgh and West Nyack, N.Y., located about 30 miles north of New York City.
More than 230 Dick's locations already carry NHL-licensed items. However, the league said that the "super shops" would offer consumers "a flagship-like NHL shopping experience with a wider and deeper selection of premium NHL merchandise, including official apparel and headwear for the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series outdoor games."
The stores will also carry goods for the Bridgestone Winter Classic between Toronto Maple Leafs and host Detroit Red Wings (Jan. 1) and the Tim Hortons Heritage Classic between the Ottawa Senators and host Vancouver Canucks (March 2).
Each NHL super Shop occupies approximately 400 square feet of space within Dick's retail locations. The NHL said this is the first time it has opened a store-within-a-store within a major retail chain.
The design of the NHL-Dick's shops is based on the NHL Powered by Reebok flagship store located in New York.
"As the premier destination for licensed NHL apparel, Dick's Sporting Goods is thrilled to partner with the league to create an elevated shopping experience for hockey fans,” Joe Schmidt, president and COO for Dick's Sporting Goods, said in a statement. “We’re excited to be offering fans of all ages our widest selection of NHL merchandise and experiential elements that will help bring the game to life in a dynamic retail environment.”
The three NHL-Dick's will carry officially licensed merchandise for the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series but focusing on items from the outdoor games in their respective areas.
“The immersive nature of each NHL super shop environment is an example of our continuing efforts to bring a bigger piece of Brand NHL into our fans’ lives."
The West Nyack location will feature merchandise for the two outdoor games at Yankee Stadium between the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils (Jan. 26) and the Rangers and New York Islanders (Jan. 29).
The locations in Chicago and Pittsburgh will feature items from the 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks at Soldier Field (March 1).
According to Brian Jennings, CMO for the NHL, “The immersive nature of each NHL super shop environment is an example of our continuing efforts to bring a bigger piece of Brand NHL into our fans’ everyday lives. The premium level assortment of NHL-licensed collections available in Dick's, the premier sporting goods chain in the U.S., offers fans an unmatched NHL experience.”
The NHL also said that, in conjunction with the City of Ann Arbor, it would extend the celebration of the Bridgestone Winter Classic on Jan. 1 with a free fan festival just outside the gates of Michigan Stadium on the University of Michigan campus. The event, from 9 AM- 1 PM (ET), will include NHL marketing partners Coors Light, McDonald's, Verizon, Reebok, Anco, Panini and Upper Deck, as well as media partners and local brands.
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