Vancouver Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo may well be criticized for his day job. He could even be picked on for costing Canada a Stanley Cup. Hell, we could even foot the bill for the riots at his door. One thing can blow all this out of the water and it’s something that isn’t that abnormal. Luongo recently signed a deal to become the face of the British Columbia Lottery Corporation’s online gambling industry site, PlayNow.com. As part of the deal he will front marketing and be in the crosshairs for anything to take a shot at him on the virtual felt.
Far from giving Canucks followers the chance to vent their vitriol at a virtual Luongo, the move also shows how the border separating the US and Canada does more than cut a divide between the one piece of land. It’s no surprise that the league involved (NHL) is predominantly geared towards Canadians and as such has a more relaxed view on the gambling industry. The fact that sports betting won’t be legalized in the US in our lifetime has as much to do with the sports league than anything else. They don’t even have to cast their eyes over to Europe to see that it works either.
The way the NHL recognizes gambling is part of the game just shows that they’re aware of what the fans do and how they enjoy themselves. Trying to act as if it’s not there is as stupid as trying to say that no-one likes to get fucked up every once in a while.
The league is likely more worried about the total bill they could be paying out if the Toronto Maple Leafs somehow stay atop the division and reach the Stanley Cup Finals. If Vancouver had it bad just spare a thought for downtown T.O.
Win or lose; they gonna fuck shit up!