NHL lockout: League brand hurting worse than post-oil spill BP, study finds

Allison Joyce

The NHL will have a major image problem once it finally ends the lockout.

The NHL and the NHLPA continue to squabble over a new collective bargaining agreement, and fans are becoming restless. One study finds the league will have some major public relations issues on their hands once the game does return, according to The Globe and Mail.

In fact, public opinion of the league could be worse than it was for BP after the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

From a branding point of view, NHL hockey and its multiple corporate sponsors are facing a huge hurdle, Kincaid says. The passionate fans are angry, the neutral fans turned off and bored, the mostly non-fans - the people hockey needs to attract if it hopes to grow - disgusted.

The company that ran the study, Level5, claims to base their findings on a combination of in-depth interviews and 1,066 surveys. They have found that the majority of fans fall between apathy and anger toward the league, and getting them back will be a difficult task.

Level5's most dire findings had previously come when evaluating the attitude towards BP following the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in 2010, but the NHL's outlook is even more grim. Many have given up on the league entirely, and the company says the NHL will likely never get them back.

The fans that are still waiting for hockey to return are hoping that findings like this will kickstart the negotiations.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Join SBNation.com

You must be a member of SBNation.com to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SBNation.com. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.