The NHL has used poker tournaments over the years to give back to the community
While the NHL is well-known for its passionate games and equally intense fights, it has a softer side to it by giving back to the community. Over the years, the NHL has raised funds through poker for many charities.
Poker has long been involved with fundraising through the efforts of the NHL. Back in 2006, 16 of the NHL’s best got together for a Charity Faceoff. But instead of limiting the prizes to the top players only, everybody had a chance to give something to their favorite charities. The first prize was $20,000, with the second prize being pegged at $10,000. Those who were knocked out from the top spots got the chance to take home $5,000 for their favorite charities.
Just recently, the Dallas Stars hosted their second annual Casino Night to support several beneficiaries such as the Cedar Park Veterans Memorial, UNICEF, Youth Hockey Foundation of Austin (YHFA), and the Williamson County Child Advocacy Center. By joining the tournament, fans were able to play against their favorite coaches and players to help raise $31,000 for The Texas Stars Foundation.
Just because different teams go head to head on the ice, it does not mean that they cannot get together when it comes to charity. One of the best examples of two teams working together is the poker tournament set up by the NHL’s Anaheim Ducks and Los Angeles Kings this coming February. Just like last year’s tournament, the funds raised will go to the Anaheim Ducks Foundation and Kings Care Foundation.
In a tournament ending this January saw NHL Alumni Phil Kessel from the Toronto Maple Leafs as the highest ranking NHL player to win by taking home the $15,000 prize. But instead of simply passing on the amount to the SickKids Foundation, he chose to donate additional cash from his own pocket in order for the foundation to take home a total of $30,000.
The relationship between poker and the NHL deepened when New Jersey allowed online poker operators to finally cater to the players in the state. The New Jersey Devils-PartyPoker deal, which is one of the most lucrative sponsorship deals in the league, stemmed from PartyPoker’s growing interest in the state. Other than sponsoring New Jersey’s hockey team, the online poker firm also went into partnership with the Borgota Casino in Atlantic City and released the partypoker iPhone app for the players in New Jersey.
By working hand in hand with the NHL, poker has proven to be a great way to raise funds for deserving charities. Not only do the charities benefit from the poker games, but fans get to play with their favorite stars and NHL players get to relax with good friends away from the ice.