When he considers which consumer brands to endorse (see The PediaBlog October 17 — “Brought To You By…”), Pittsburgh Penguins star Sidney Crosby takes things seriously:
“Whatever it is, if you form a partnership with a company, a brand, you have to agree with what they want and what they stand for,” he said.
That includes his impact on impressionable children.
Crosby has deals with equipment company Reebok and Canadian sporting goods store Sport Chek. He also does ads for Gatorade and Tim Horton’s, a mainly Canadian restaurant chain. In 2010, he had a deal with Dempster’s, a Canadian bread company.
That lineup, as it stood in 2010, was analyzed as part of the research for a study that was published this month in the medical journal Pediatrics.
The study concluded that, while some high-profile athletes — the NBA’s LeBron James, NFL’s Peyton Manning and tennis’ Serena Williams were prominently mentioned — endorse food and beverage products that are nutrient-poor and encourage unhealthy consumption among children, Crosby rated much higher.
Crosby’s image and his influence when it comes to youngsters is important to him and is taken into account when he weighs endorsement offers, said Brisson.
“He’s very conscientious about it,” [Agent Pat] Brisson said. “He has to be comfortable. He has to like the product. He thinks about the time they’re asking. It’s important that he sends the right message.
“He’s a role model.”
Shelly Anderson suggests the popular Canadian Tim Horton’s coffee and donut chain might tarnish his image, but Crosby pushes back:
“You think of youth hockey in Canada, you automatically think of Tim Horton’s,” said Crosby, who was a “Timbit” youth player and easily launches into a heartfelt spiel.
“Tim Horton’s kids’ camps are right across Canada,” he said. “Once a year, they have all the proceeds from one day at every Tim Horton’s store go toward the kids’ camps, giving kids an opportunity to go to camp. They really care a lot about their communities.
“There are so many Tim Horton’s everywhere in Canada that they’re a big part of the community. It’s pretty common for that to be the hangout after a hockey game or before a hockey game. It’s kind of a staple — you’re stopping there on the way to the rink and on the way back from the rink. It’s just part of growing up in Canada.”
Read Shelly Anderson’s article from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette here.