Minor league hockey is a haven for outlandish ideas and a testing ground for some interesting ideas, and this season the ECHL is going to be trotting out blue nets.
As part of a multi-year partnership with auto insurance company GEICO, the league will switch from the traditional red posts to the blue posts, adorned with the GEICO word mark twice on each pipe. It won’t be just one or two teams using the nets, either. All 28 U.S. based teams will have blue nets.
“The ECHL is very pleased to enter into the multi-year partnership with GEICO, one of the country’s largest insurance companies and most recognized and admired brands,” ECHL commissioner Brian McKenna said in a release.
With the agreement, the ECHL becomes the first professional league in North America to change not only the color of the goals, but to make a deal to sell advertising space on the posts. There’s ever-increasing discussion about professional leagues producing revenue through advertisements on jerseys, but the ECHL’s quirky idea is — at least for now — an interesting solution.
"This fits GEICO. It's fun. It's creative. It's an attention-grabber. We're changing history here,” President of Division ONE Sports Troy Miller said.
The blue GEICO-branded goals will get their first workout Friday evening when the ECHL season kicks off on an eight-game opening night.