Actor Liev Schreiber has done numerous commercials promoting the NHL, from the commercial promoting the beginning of the 2012-13 season after the Lockout to the 2015 Stanley Cup Final. The World Cup of Hockey begins this Saturday in Toronto, but once the tournament is concluded, the world’s best hockey players go back to do what they have always been doing: play for club; play for city. Four weeks from tonight, the 2016-17 NHL season commences, and this commercial, entitled “Two Cities” explains how a NHL player might call one place “home”, but the city in which they play for becomes their “adopted hometown.”
Everyone has an origin story:
The place where you’re born that stays in your blood and shapes who you are, until the day comes when you’re culled somewhere new to try and make your mark.
Little by little, the people become your people. Their hopes, your responsibility.
You offer them everything, and in return, that’s what they give you back.
Together, you work to build something as permanent as the city itself — a symbol for all it means to live there, until finally, if you’re lucky, they consider you a native son.
And that’s when you realize a person can be from two places at once.
The 2016-17 NHL season is a historic one. The Pittsburgh Penguins are not only enter the season as defending Stanley Cup Champions, but they, along with fellow 1967-68 Expansion teams, in-state rival Philadelphia Flyers, and Western Conference teams St. Louis Blues and the Los Angeles Kings are all celebrating their 50th year of operation. St. Louis is hosting the Winter Classic, Los Angeles is hosting the All-Star Game, The Toronto Maple Leafs are celebrating their centennial, the Ottawa Senators celebrating their 25th year as a modern-day NHL franchise, the Arizona Coyotes celebrating two decades in the Desert, the Edmonton Oilers are celebrating their inaugural season at Rogers Place, the Detroit Red Wings are celebrating their final season at Joe Louis Arena. And this season marks the last time the NHL will be a 30-team league for the foreseeable future.
That’s just the beginning. My annual division-by-division season previews will be published the next four Tuesdays, so stay tuned!