Like F. Scott Fitzgerald famously said, “action is character.”
Most official Twitter accounts of sports teams are very dry and dull. Or they are excessively positive all the time. The Chicago Blackhawks’ Twitter account certainly fits this mold. Of course, that really isn’t a surprise given that the Blackhawks organization is a bit obsessed with controlling the message. The Blackhawks public relations is kind of like the sporting world’s version of the Glavlit and Pravda in the old Soviet Union combined.
The Chicago Blackhawks beat the LA Kings 2-1 today in game one of the NHL Western Conference Finals. And as the series progresses, it’s probably a good idea to keep on eye on the LA Kings official Twitter account. Like the rest of their 232,000 followers, you’ll be entertained.
The LA Kings didn’t tweet much trash talk today, but they did say this:
"Let's Go Haw...." Kings GOAL! Williams gets a sick on a loose puck and with the 2nd shot on goal, #LAKings lead 1-0.
— LA Kings (@LAKings) June 1, 2013
The Blackhawks may have 340,000 followers, but it’s hard to imagine the Politburo behind it tweeting anything remotely interesting. The Kings’ Twitter account and social media professionals often have fun at the expense of opposing teams’ fans and hometowns. They tweet hilarity that you won’t hear any other hockey team tweet. Or any professional sports team.
After the Kings beat the Vancouver Canucks in an early playoff game, the official account posted a tweet reading, “To everyone outside of BC you’re welcome.” The Canucks tweet in particular caused a stir in sports business circles. Some were aghast at the flippancy and called it a major breach of etiquette. But Pat Donahue, the Kings employee who sent the tweet, says his boss Dewayne Hankins “texted me a few minutes later and said, ‘Hall of Fame tweet,’ or something like that.”
Given the bad blood between the Blackhawks and Canucks, and to a lesser degree between the cities of Chicago and Vancouver, I think a lot of Chicagoans appreciated that tweet. When they were taking on New Jersey, their Stanley Cup Finals opponent last year, they tweeted: "other than fist pumping, what is there to do in NJ?" (a witty "Jersey Shore" reference)
Unfortunately, the LA Kings went a little too far during the last round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs by letting Kevin Ryder, of the Kevin and Bean show on KROQ Los Angeles, live Tweet the LA Kings vs. San Jose Sharks Stanley Cup playoff game. Ryder took over during the second period of a playoff game, and he made an unfunny joke in bad taste about sexual assault. The LA Kings deleted the Tweet and quickly issued an apology.
And like the Kings’ Twitter bio says: “just a quick note, we apologize for any future tweets that may offend you.”
The LA Kings also strike back at sports media too. During last year’s cup run, the Los Angeles media conveyed just how clueless they are about hockey. One local television station said on air “the Kings have the ball.” Another station misused the logo from the Sacramento Kings of the NBA as the LA Kings emblem. Another L.A. tv station used the Sacramento Kings mascot when they meant to display the LA Kings. Donahue had some fun with the infographic trend and these mistakes by producing this parody graphic. (also displayed in the gallery).
So stay tuned to Twitter for this series. It should be fun.
Paul M. Banks is the owner of The Sports Bank.net. ("Quasi-endorsed" by Philadelphia Eagles Coach Chip Kelly) He’s also an author who also contributes regularly to MSN, Fox Sports , Chicago Now, Walter Football.com and Yardbarker
Type your email address in the box and click the "create subscription" button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.