Free Ride

After Scott Gomez won a car recently for pulling off a ridiculous hole-in-one at his golf tournament in Anchorage, he said that although a new car in Alaska is nice, he doesn’t need one in Montreal because the players are sponsored by BMW and that’s what they drive there.

What a nice perk for the players. A shiny BMW to drive all winter, without the hassle of actually paying for it.

But I don’t think it’s always been the case that a car company outfits an entire team across the board with their product like BMW is doing now. In the past, I’m pretty sure players worked out their own deals with dealerships.

Below, in the mid-seventies, Guy Lafleur had it going with Chevrolet. The Monte Carlo was a bit of a gas guzzler, but back then, gas was cheap (.45 cents a gallon in Canada in 1976), and it was no big deal for Flower. He was making his 100 grand with the Habs and a similar amount in endorsements, and he’d fill ‘er up when he stopped in for smokes, which were probably free too.


4 thoughts on “Free Ride”

  1. Today’s players are given cars? Are you kidding me? Good god, talk about perks.

    I’d just go out and buy myself one just out of principle. I wouldn’t buy some big sports car (the only outrageous purchase I’d make is for a Dodge Challenger the one in Vanishing Point).

    This really takes the cake. BMWs even! Does this happen all over the NHL or is it just us? If it is just us, we really do treat our players like rock stars don’t we?

    The icing on the cake would be to find out the team buys the homes for the players.

  2. Darth, I think free cars probably only happen in real hockey markets. Canada for sure. I’m sure it helps business if the public sees a famous hockey player driving a certain type. It’s a beautiful perk.

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