STATELINE (WIFR) -- The Blackhawks stepped up their game to take the Stanley Cup Final 4 games to 2 against Tampa Bay. Unfortunately counterfeiters are likely to step up their game as well. With the victory comes increased interest in showing fan support for the team but the Better Business Bureau warns; Blackhawks fans need to be wary of counterfeit gear.
“We hear the championship caps are in great demand and are hard to find right now but it’s a safe bet other items such as jerseys and t-shirts will be in short supply as well,” says Dennis Horton, director of the Rockford Regional Office of the Better Business Bureau. “The really hot items to counterfeit are the t-shirts, caps and smaller items that can easily be sold on the street.”
Fans buying merchandise at NHL.com, an arena store, or from a reputable local retailer can be pretty confident that their purchases will be genuine. There are ways to tell if the item you are buying is counterfeit:
• Look for the NHL Hologram – A hologram should appear on all NHL licensed merchandise. On a jersey or sweater you should find it on a hand tag on. On smaller items like a hat expect to find a hologram sticker.
• Look at the Stitching – Counterfeit jerseys and hats often have inferior stitching there could even be typos.
• Look for discoloration or Fuzzy Logos – The logos should be crisp and clean. The screen printing on fake t-shirts will be blurry and have some color bleed and sometimes the colors in the logo are incorrect.
• Look for snipped tags – Counterfeiters will buy cheap garments on the secondary market and print the logos on these. The snipped tag indicates the garments are seconds.
• Avoid Unlicensed sites – Fans should be leery of purchases on sites such as Craigslist, online auctions sites or sites not licensed by the NHL.
Horton noted, “Typically the prices for counterfeit goods are below market rate – so if the price seems too good to be true the garment may not be worth what you pay for it.”