MassMutual Ditches Ad with Russian NHL Star Alex Ovechkin Amid Ukraine Invasion

MassMutual Ditches Ad with Russian NHL Star Alex Ovechkin Amid Ukraine Invasion

MassMutual has yanked an ad featuring Russian hockey star Alex Ovechkin off the air after his home country invaded Ukraine.

The company has declined to say specifically why they decided to pull the ad.

Like @ovi8 and @backstrom19, we believe in planning and protecting, on and off the ice. Here’s to our official partnership with the NHL. #LiveMutual@NHLPA 🏒 pic.twitter.com/mOTxpGebLY

— MassMutual (@massmutual) October 12, 2021

MassMutual is not the only major company to pull their ads featuring the Russian hockey star. CCM, a Canadian company that manufactures hockey equipment, has stopped using Russian hockey players, including Ovechkin, in their international marketing campaigns.

“Although Mr. Ovechkin is not responsible for the Russian government’s actions, we took the decision to not use him (or any Russian player) on any global CCM communication at this point,” CCM Chief Executive Marrouane Nabih told TSN via the New York Post.

Hockey legend Dominik Hasek has called for the NHL to suspend all Russian players from the league. Hasek took particular exception to Ovechkin, who has been pictured with Putin and plays for the Russian national team.

Russian President Vladimir Putin holds a certificate along with Russian national ice hockey team member Alexander Ovechkin thanking Ovechkin for his...

(AFP PHOTO / RIA NOVOSTI / POOL / SERGEI KARPUKHIN)

“What!? Not only an ablist, a chicken s–t, but also a liar!” Hasek tweeted about Ovechkin. “Every adult in Europe knows well, that Putin is a mad killer and that Russia is waging an offensive war against a free country and its people.”

What!? Not only an alibist, a chicken shit, but also a liar! Every adult in Europe knows well, that Putin is a mad killer and that Russia is waging an offensive war against the free country and its people. The NHL must immediately suspend contracts(contin)https://t.co/BQnQaf76L7

— Dominik Hasek (@hasek_dominik) February 26, 2022

As Breitbart’s Warner Todd Huston reports, “Hasek went on to add that the league ‘must immediately suspend contracts for all Russian players.’ He also accused the league of having ‘indirect co-responsibility for the dead in Ukraine’ unless it suspends Russia-born players.

“He noted that some Russian players who are speaking out against the war still need to be suspended regardless.”

I also want to write, that I am very sorry for those Russian athletes, who condemn V. Putin and his Russian aggression in Ukraine. However, at the moment I also consider their exclusion a necessity.

— Dominik Hasek (@hasek_dominik) February 26, 2022

While the NHL has stopped short of suspending the contracts of Russian players, they have suspended contracts with their Russian partners and condemned the invasion of Ukraine.

Dylan Gwinn