Boston Bruins rookie Tyler Seguin signed an endorsement deal with Dunkin' Donuts this week. The company plans to use Seguin as the “centerpiece of the company's 'Caught Cold' promotion.” There is no word whether the 19-year-old forward actually drinks coffee, and we're not looking into it, but there is something fishy about Segin's deal.
Several months ago, Denver Post writer Terry Frei wrote that GM's could use endorsement deals as a way to circumvent the league's salary cap. Here's what he wrote:
“I was told to look out for how long it took NHL executives to figure out new ways how to not necessarily circumvent or violate the cap, but to at least find imaginative ways to 'massage' it. I’ve always thought the biggest potential for a loophole was if teams found ways to line up extra income for players. Example: Colorado signs an unrestricted free agent for a 'reasonable' deal, and all of a sudden he signs a huge endorsement deal with the soft drink company whose name is on the Denver arena, on the alleged basis that having him playing in the Pepsi Center enhances the value of the naming rights. Or he signs a Wal Mart* endorsement deal. “
As you can see, Dunkin' Donuts is clearly a sponsor at TD Garden, where the Bruins play. Frei said in the article that we've yet to see this type of deal. Maybe we haven't been looking closely enough into players' endorsements and if they are being used to circumvent to salary cap.
According to CapGeek, the Bruins currently have $0 of cap space.
*Frei is referencing the Avs/Nuggets/Rapids/Pepsi Center/Dick's Sporting Goods Park (and Rams) are controlled by the Kroenke family, and Mrs. Ann Kroenke is one of the Waltons.
Matthew Coller is a staff member of the Business of Sports Network, and is a freelance writer. He can be followed on Twitter
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