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Hulu partners with NHL for Stanley Cup campaign

US subscription video-on-demand service Hulu has agreed a deal to sponsor the NHL ice hockey league and the NHL Players’ Association during this year’s season-ending Stanley Cup Playoffs and Final.

The partnership includes a national marketing campaign for Hulu across NBC Sports, the NHL’s digital and social channels, as well as camera-visible, in-stadium inventory at all US NHL venues. Hulu will also sponsor the NHL’s 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs Party at Las Vegas’ T-Mobile Arena later today (Wednesday).

Hulu will create a custom hockey collection through its service during the Playoffs and will become the presenting partner of NHL.com during the season’s finale. Through its partnership with the NHLPA, Hulu will create a number of video vignettes to showcase NHL players and drive awareness of the company as a streaming option during the Playoffs.

Players that will feature in the vignettes will include Dustin Brown of the Los Angeles Kings, Brent Burns of the San Jose Sharks, John Carlson of the Washington Capitals, Taylor Hall of the New Jersey Devils, Ryan Johansen of the Nashville Predators, William Karlsson of the Vegas Golden Knights, Phil Kessel of the Pittsburgh Penguins, Nikita Kucherov of the Tampa Bay Lightning, Brad Marchand of the Boston Bruins, and Blake Wheeler of the Winnipeg Jets.

Hulu will also be the on-air presenting sponsor of NBC Sports’ NHL Live pre-game show for the Playoffs, through which it will benefit from brand integration during the opening broadcast.

“(Today) we'll be embarking on the most exciting and unpredictable time in sports with the start of the Stanley Cup Playoffs,” Keith Wachtel, the NHL’s chief revenue officer and executive vice-president, said. “Our main goal is to bring these memorable moments to the broadest possible audience, and partnering with a powerful brand like Hulu will allow us to drive deeper engagement with our fans.”

Patrizio Spagnoletto, head of media and subscriber growth at Hulu, added: “Since we launched our live TV package, we've seen live sports drive a very large part of our growth, so we are especially excited to team up with the NHL to celebrate the 2018 Stanley Cup Playoffs – an event we know our viewers will be watching. With sports serving as the centrepiece for many of our live TV viewers, we are always looking for new, innovative ways to engage fans and make sure they never miss a single moment of their favourite games.”