Cannes Lions

Chipotle x NHL: Fuel the Athlete


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Chipotle recently sealed a multi-year North America partnership to become an official sponsor of the NHL. To break the ice with hockey die-hards, we worked with the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche to create a one-of-a-kind immersive experience during their Stanley Cup championship playoff run.

The objective of this initiative was to leverage Chipotle’s new official NHL sponsor agreement promoting “Real Food for Real Athletes” to devoted NHL viewers in a way that cut through the cutter of traditional sports advertising.


During the intermission of a Colorado Avalanche game, a Chipotle branded Zamboni brought out a giant burrito bowl and fork to the middle of the rink with the messaging “Real Food for Real Athletes." A giant hockey glove then burst through the ice, grabbed the bowl, and submerged itself back under the ice. A few beats later, the hockey glove reemerged, hungrily pawed for the black fork, and finally held it up in victory. All while renowned NHL announcer Alan Roach provided the play by play.


In-stadium fans ate it up. Broadcast viewers who were tricked into thinking the commercial break was a part of the programming took to social media in disbelief at what they had just seen. The reality bending stunt broke new ground and cut through the clutter of traditional sports marketing.

The live linear broadcast drew 1.1M viewers. Additionally, we secured a social amplification schedule across Bleacher Report, Open Ice and NHL on TNT delivering an additional 560K impressions, and a 53% view rate - more than 2x BR’s view rate benchmark which speaks to the strategic placement and contextual relevance of the content.

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