NHL Official Beer Molson Canadian Leverages Puck Drop Via ‘It’s Complicated’ Campaign

Molson Canadian leverages its NHL partnership and its sponsorships of the Toronto Maple Leafs, Ottawa Senators and Edmonton Oilers through a new campaign called ‘It’s Complicated.”


The idea behind the campaign from the league’s official beer brand is that whilst being a hockey fan in Canada can be complicated, choosing a Canadian beer isn’t.


Created in harness with agency Rethink Canada, the activation is brought to life through a trio of TV commercials which shine a spotlight on quintessentially Canadian complexities faced by hockey fans rights across the country.


Launched in time for the 13 January puck drop on the new season and marking the NHL’s new divisional rebranded/sponsored structure: the Scotia NHL North Division, the Honda NHL West Division, the Discover NHL Central Division and the MassMutual NHL East Division.


The new campaign comes to life through three new hockey-led TV spots: two for Molson Canadian (airing nationally except Quebec) and one promoting Molson Export in English and French (airing in Quebec).


The Molson Canadian ‘It’s Complicated’ spots explore the quirky realities of being a hockey fan in Canada from the rivalries of marriage and neighbours and the like.




“Maybe your province doesn’t have a team. Maybe you married into a Bruins family. Maybe you love the game but you’re throwing in the towel on ever, ever understanding icing,” explained Joy Ghosh, Senior Director at the Molson Family of Brands. “No one gets icing anyway. All of this is wonderfully complicated. But what’s not at all complicated is repping Canada’s game with a Canadian beer.”


“The North Division has literally upped the ante on hockey’s Canadian-ness,” added Joy. “It’s never been called Hockey Night in America, but our game has never felt so ours. That’s worth raising a Canadian to.”


The campaign was created for a Molson Canadian marketing team which included Senior Brand Director Joy Ghosh, Senior Marketing Manager Katie Rankin, Senior Manager Of Sports & Entertainment Partnerships Brian Collins, Brand PR Manager Jessica Vieira Teixeira and Assistant Manager Of Partnerships Brittany Harris by Rethink Canada.


The creative agency team included CCO Aaron Starkman, Creative Director Dhaval Bhatt, Art Director Shawn James, Writer Irfan Khan, Strategist Nicole Rajesky, Broadcast Producer (In-House) Shelby Spigelman, Group Account Director Karim Tubbeh and Account Manager Megan Christopher.


The production company was Skin & Bones with Director Taso Alexander, Editor Chris Murphy, Director Of Photography Barry Parrell, Line Producer Luke Bryant and Casting Director Shasta Lutz.


Post production was by Outsider Editorial, Online was handled by Wingman, with grading by Alter Ego, while the audio house was Vapor Music, media hanlded by Wavemaker and PR by Citizen.





It’s cold, so it must be hockey season and few beers are as associated with hockey as Molson Canadian: which is the Official Beer of the NHL, as well as the Official Beer of the Toronto Maple Leafs, Ottawa Senators and Edmonton Oilers.


It was back in 2011 that the NHL announced a major seven-year agreement with brewers Molson Coors in Canada which saw flagship brand Molson Canadian take the exclusive league rights in the beer sponsorship category with the Official Beer of the NHL designation, beginning with the 2011-12 NHL season.


Then in January 2020 Molson Coors announced a multi-year extension of this partnership with the NHL as an official beer of the competition in Canada and the rights to activate throughout the NHL regular season and across all major NHL tentpole events (including the Heritage Classic, All-Star Weekend, Stanley Cup Playoffs and Stanley Cup Final).





Molson Canadian



Rethink Canada





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