Oilers T-shirt and jersey sales soar alongside playoff success

1 / 2
Oilers T-shirt and jersey sales soar alongside playoff success

The Edmonton Oilers' success making it to the Stanley Cup playoffs is good news for local retailers selling the team's merchandise.

"I'm seeing sales increase by over 1,000 per cent each week," said Evan Parker, sales manager at Sport Chek in Edmonton City Centre Mall. "I can't get these things in fast enough."

Parker said the most popular items are Oilers T-shirts, followed by the new orange team jersey. 

Not surprisingly, the most popular Oilers T-shirts and jerseys bear the name of team captain Connor McDavid.

"All my McDavids I sold out the day after they clinched the playoff spot," Parker said.

The Oilers are up 2-1 in their series against the San Jose Sharks. They play Game 4 in San Jose on Tuesday. 

Shop online for popular players

Jersey City in West Edmonton Mall is having the same problem keeping Oilers gear in stock. 

Assistant manager Jamaell Stone said the store is sold out of merchandise featuring more popular players like McDavid, Patrick Maroon and Leon Draisaitl. 

Stone said the store is constantly getting more jerseys in stock but it can be challenging for fans to buy something with the name of their favourite Oiler, especially if it is McDavid. 

"We tell customers to go online and shop online but even at that point, it gets pretty hard," he said. 

Still, Stone said customers are excited to have the Oilers in the playoffs.

"It goes from just being a jersey sale to actually a conversation," he said.

"You end up conversing with the customers and you get to feel their spirit or their happiness for the fact that the Oilers are … in the playoffs and they're actually playing good, too."

Aaron Zhou bought a Milan Lucic jersey for his wife on Monday, even though she doesn't usually watch hockey.

"Everybody's excited about the Oilers making the playoffs after 11 years," Zhou said.

More staff on game days

Parker, the Sport Chek sales manager, said he's scheduling more staff on game days to handle the extra demand for Oilers merchandise.

"I schedule two, three, sometimes even four extra staff," he said. "That's how much extra traffic we're seeing on game days."  

Parker said fans who want a specific jersey should call ahead to make sure it hasn't sold out.

But even fans who settle for their second jersey choice aren't letting that spoil their mood.

"When I work in retail, I get my fair share of grumpy customers, " he said, laughing. "But when it comes to anything Oilers, everyone's been in a great mood."