Vegas Golden Knights’ Cody Eakin (21), Jonathan Marchessault (81) and Deryk Engelland (5) defend in front of goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury (29) during Game 2 in the Western Conference Finals against the Winnipeg Jets on Monday. (Trevor Hagan/The Canadian Press)

Fleury tops Vegas Golden Knights merchandise flying off shelves

French Canadian goalie’s jersey leading the way in sales

The Vegas Golden Knights are proving to be as popular at the merchandise table as they are in Sin City.

The NHL expansion team has been a hot ticket all season at T-Mobile Arena and that has continued during the Golden Knights’ deep playoff run.

With goalie Marc-Andre Fleury’s jersey leading the way in sales, Golden Knights gear is also flying off the shelves.

Specific numbers weren’t immediately available but Nirva Milord, the NHL’s senior director of corporate communications, said that the team’s overall North American sales have been very strong.

“The Vegas Golden Knights are in the top five in merch sales all season,” she said Tuesday in an email. ”Marc-Andre Fleury is tops among players in playoffs merch sales.”

READ MORE: Stanley Cup playoff conference-finals predictions

Fleury, a three-time Stanley Cup champion in Pittsburgh, was not protected by the Penguins in last year’s expansion draft. He has helped anchor the Golden Knights and gave the first-year squad some immediate star power.

The Vegas success story reads like a Hollywood script.

A random mix of journeymen, up-and-comers and castoffs quickly meshed as a team, delivered results on the ice, and provided one of the top storylines of the season.

Few hockey observers predicted that Vegas would roll through the campaign and topple the Los Angeles Kings and San Jose Sharks in the first two rounds of the playoffs. The Golden Knights will host the Jets in Game 3 of the Western Conference final on Wednesday after splitting the first two games of the best-of-seven series in Winnipeg.

Along the way, cash registers have been ringing with sales of hats, hoodies, sweatshirts, T-shirts and jerseys adorned with the knight helmet symbol and the team’s steel grey, black, gold and red colours.

Marvin Ryder, a marketing professor at McMaster University, feels there are several reasons for the strong merchandise sales, including the lack of competition from other top sport leagues in Las Vegas and the fact hockey fans and youngsters will flock to anything new when it comes to gear.

But where the franchise really delivered, Ryder said, was with the creation of a modern, powerful logo coupled with an attractive colour scheme.

“Whatever graphic identity team they hired, they knocked it right out of the park,” Ryder said from Hamilton.

It helps to have a winning hockey team too.

“Ultimately it’s how the fans embrace it,” Ryder said. “In this case, I’m going to say it’s more about (being) lucky. You had all the pieces but they got them right the very first day. That’s the unusual part of the story. Normally it takes longer for the teams to find that combination of performance and the right-looking logo that people are proud to wear.

“They got it right from Day 1.”

Last month, the NHL reported that Fleury was fourth in jersey sales behind Toronto’s Auston Matthews, Pittsburgh’s Sidney Crosby and Edmonton’s Connor McDavid.

Gregory Strong, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

RDKB, province reach agreement flood clean-up fees

Flood victims will not have to pay at the landfill to tip flood-damaged goods.

MP Cannings’ long-awaited wood-use bill passes in House vote

The private member’s bill is his first to pass the House, a rare feat for rookie MPs in opposition

Rain, storms to hit Kootenays, Boundary amid flood crisis

Environment Canada is calling for 20 to 40 mm of rain by Friday

Missing Chilliwack man may be travelling to Grand Forks on motorcycle

Wilfred James Kilgren, 69, was last heard from by a friend on April 11

Thunderstorms headed to the West Kootenay

Environment Canada re-issued their special weather statement this morning,

Trans Mountain pipeline: Is it worth the risk?

Concerns range from the threat of an oil spill to the impact of tanker traffic on wildlife

B.C. to spend $181M to create 200 general practitioner jobs

Jobs will go to new medical school graduates

Federal leaders trade barbs about India trip at press gallery dinner

Justin Trudeau’s infamous trip to India earlier this year was the focus of many of the jabs

B.C. VIEWS: Our poverty reduction plan is already in place

NDP has another promise it needs to appear to keep

WestJet pilot strike averted as parties agree to mediation

Pilots had warned they could go on strike starting May 19

Most Read