How could you? How could you? The Red Wings and Amway.

They sold out. Not we sold out. They sold out.

Writers have always harped on how sports fans tend to refer to teams in the first person plural tense, complaining that the fans aren’t really part of the team. Today, the Red Wings proved those miserable old bastards right.

This year, there will be no Detroit Red Wings. There will, however, be the Detroit Red Wings presented by Amway.

The Red Wings have signed a contract with Amway, the Ada, Mich. based pyramid scheme, to let this company become the Red Wings’ “presenting sponsor”. That includes having Amway plastered all over every possible surface, right down to (in the words of the official team press release) “the Amway logo seen almost as prominently as the Winged Wheel in all team advertising, branding and marketing materials.”

Truly disgusting. In every sense of the word, this is a shot at the Red Wings’ fanbase. If you’re reading this, and care about the Red Wings, you should be outraged. If you don’t care about the Red Wings but still root for another team, you too should be outraged. Or if you merely care about morality in business, and where to draw the proverbial line, you must care about this story.

Allowing Amway, a pyramid scheme that preys upon the downtrodden and desperate, to graft themselves onto the Detroit Red Wings is astoundingly irresponsible.

——

The Detroit Red Wings are a Detroit institution. I don’t need to explain that much to you. The amount of goodwill generated by the Red Wings’ brand and logo is immeasurable. The Winged Wheel is one of the most recognizable icons of Detroit, right alongside the automobile and Motown music.

Amway has long been thought of as a scam. For decades, the company has operated by having low-level suppliers attempt to sell products at a high mark-up, then having other suppliers supply them, and so on, and so forth. That is a pyramid scheme. Furthermore, the Amway culture typically relies upon these bottom-level sellers consuming hundreds of dollars worth of motivational materials, designed to get them even more caught up in the cult of Amway. Needless to say, since the Amway scheme has generated so much criticism over the years, the company tried to rebrand itself with the name “Quixtar” in 1999, ultimately reverting back to the original Amway name in 2007.

The Red Wings referred to this as a partnership. This is not a partnership. This is one truly great entity siding with a truly despicable entity, and in the process, bringing one side down to the other’s level.

In short, here are the basic facts about this whole thing, from the Red Wings themselves. After each blockquote, my thoughts on the afore-mentioned quote.

The new agreement will involve substantial in-arena branding initiatives, as well as an eclectic mix of innovative and interactive components designed to enhance the overall fan experience at Joe Louis Arena and in the community. Some key components of the announcement today were: that the Wings Red & White preseason scrimmage will return to Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids on Sept. 29; and Nutrilite, Amway’s sports nutrition products, will be the official vitamin and supplement of the Red Wings.

None of this enhances the overall fan experience at the Joe, unless enhancing actually means smearing a ton of Amway logos everywhere. In-arena branding isn’t an enhancement.

“The 50 year history and global success of Amway along with the elite status of the Red Wings organization are a considerable source of pride for Michiganders,” says Steve Lieberman, Vice President and Managing Director for Amway North America.

To put it bluntly, no. Amway, you are not a considerable source of pride for Michiganders. You are actually a pretty big source of shame. The world knows Michigan for cars, timber, music, furniture, and thanks to you guys in Ada, cult-like pyramid schemes.

The Red Wings, though, are a considerable source of pride for Michiganders.

In the vein of Mr. Lieberman’s quote, I’d like to congratulate myself and Justin Verlander, for our combined 20 wins pitching for the Tigers this season, and we’d like to thank you all for the support. The two of us couldn’t have done it without you.

“The logo is attached to ours when we do print advertising or if we do a television spot when they say, ‘Detroit Red Wings hockey presented by Amway’,” (Olympia Entertainment president Tom) Wilson said. “We will be joined very, very closely. It won’t impact anything other than to bring the two brands closer together. … We expect to be together for a long, long time.”

This won’t impact anything, except for that thing that everyone doesn’t want to have happen.

“What you find when you do a presenting sponsor is if you have the same type of company that has the same goals and objectives as you have, you can kind of bounce ideas off of each other, particularly when it comes to doing things out in the community,” said Tom Wilson, president of Olympia Entertainment.

Given what we know about Amway, (along with what you will read later on), how terrible is it that the president of Olympia Entertainment thinks that the Red Wings and Amway have “the same goals and objectives”? If one company is a predatory scam, and other shares the same goals and objectives, doesn’t that make the second…also a predatory scam?

“For fans it will be a season-long, sort of, unveiling of things,” Wilson said. “…So it will impact everything that we do.”

That’s later on in the article. For those keeping track, the Red Wings “partnering” with Amway means:

- Nothing will be impacted besides bringing Amway closer to the Red Wings.
- Everything that the Red Wings do will be impacted.

Therefore…

- Everything that the Red Wings do will be designed towards bringing Amway closer to the Red Wings.

Got it.

Everything about this agreement is superficially shady. There is no real economic reason for this move, as the NHL’s financial situation has resolved itself somewhat, and there has never been any known financial difficulty for the Red Wings. Something like this has never been asked for whatsoever, and the move can only produce a backlash. And, sadly, any money coming from Amway is essentially dirty money.

——

First off, as mentioned earlier on, this whole thing is entirely a sellout move. There’s never been any reason to suspect that the Red Wings are in any financial trouble.

For money coming in, here are a variety of things that help the team, revenue-wise.

- The Red Wings have a well-known sweetheart lease on the Joe Louis Arena from the city of Detroit, reducing arena costs by a huge amount. Unlike many other teams, who are paying off their rink or leasing from a city, the Red Wings have been paying little to nothing for years. Sure, some revenue goes back to Detroit, but at they aren’t paying off arena debts.

- Despite all of the snide remarks over the years about the Red Wings’ attendance, our attendance in Hockeytown was third in the entire NHL last year, at a overall rate of 98.9 percent capacity. Only Chicago and Pittsburgh had a higher percentage of capacity, and both of those teams play in newer buildings.

Last season, the 2010-11 Red Wings had 28 sellouts in the regular season, including 23 straight to end the season. Overall, the Red Wings actually made attendance gains from the year before, as they averaged 19,680 fans per game (98.1% overall) instead of the 19,546 fans per game (97.4% overall) in 2009-10.

For the most part, the Red Wings have been the consistent leader in NHL attendance, year in and year out. Since 1989-90, no team has had the attendance levels of the Red Wings.

Even during the one season where the Wings were most hurt by low attendance, 2007-08, the team began rallying fans around the mid-season mark and still sold 94% of the overall tickets for the year. Also, that season ended with a Stanley Cup championship, which I’m sure helped the bottom line.

Meanwhile, over the same time, the Pistons went from 100% attendance in 2007-08, to 99.1% in 2008-09, to 84.9% in 2009-10, to 75.5% in 2010-11. And if anyone wants to complain that not everyone has shown up at the Joe, I’d invite them to check out the Palace last season.

- Last year, the NHL was getting $75 million combined from NBC and Versus, with all of that coming from Versus. NBC paid nothing, due to a revenue sharing agreement. Works out to $2.5 million per team.

Now, with a $2 billion, ten-year deal, the NHL is receiving $200 million per year. That works out to around $6.6 million per team, per year. In short, the Red Wings just got a bonus $4 million for this season.

For money going out, here is the one thing that is most obvious to fans:

- Salary-wise, the Red Wings are paying significantly less for players than before the lockout. Before player salaries were tied to revenue, here are the Red Wings’ salaries from 1997-98 to today:

1997-98 – $58,997,000
1998-99 – $47,084,000
1999-00 – $49,295,849
2000-01 – $55,207,500
2001-02 – $65,983,750
2002-03 – $72,285,506
2003-04 – $78,881,286

2005-06 – $39,400,000
2006-07 – $45,200,000
2007-08 – $44,633,000
2008-09 – $55,653,599
2009-10 – $58,827,920
2010-11 – $59,497,095
2011-12 – $58,454,545

There’s two things to take from this data. First off, with little new revenue coming in, the Red Wings cut their payroll in half after the lockout. Secondly, since the current salary cap is tied to revenue coming in, the Red Wings are still paying less than their peak of 2001-04, by almost 25%…and that total is only going up because they are making more money overall. Either way, the Red Wings are not paying as much for players, proportionally, as they did before.

In conclusion, let’s just say that the Red Wings are making money. The team isn’t hurting, financially, as they were in past years. In fact, the team is actually doing better than ever. Nothing crazy is necessary.

——

Now, onto this ‘presenting sponsor’ crap.

It’s stupid. So stupid. The Detroit Red Wings exist to be the Detroit Red Wings brand, not merely a subsidary for some corporation. It’s visually and creatively offensive. Every time that Red Wings fans see Amway, the team brand only goes down as a result. Ultimately, the Red Wings and the image of Hockeytown is getting mortgaged off to a very bad future.

One might look at this and think that this soon-to-be fiasco and assume that it’s a one-off mistake. I think it’s really the opposite, tracing back to a pattern from new Olympia president Tom Wilson, and coming back to the classic point of how hockey fans are not necessarily like those of other sports. Let me explain.

Tom Wilson came over to the Red Wings/Olympia last year, after 31 seasons at the Pistons. For most of that time, the Pistons did great business…when the team was winning. For some of the 1980′s, when the Pistons were not that good, business wasn’t great with the team. The Bad Boys era came up, and suddenly the team was on fire. Then, that squad evaporated, and the Pistons went back down.

At this point, we have to take a closer look. Palace management, which at some point must include Wilson, approved of every then-trendy thing to do at the time, one shortsighted patch after another. Most prominently, the team switched from its longtime red, white and blue jerseys to the 1990′s color scheme of teal, burgundy, gold and black. The logo was changed too, from a minimalist basketball to a flaming horse head. On the court, the team struggled despite superstar Grant Hill, moving through coaches quickly and constantly signing free-agents that came with big names and little talent. (The jersey was described by some as “marketing run amok” andon Yahoo’s list of the worst NBA jerseys of the last decade.) It goes without saying that the team did not make that much money. Just check out the photographed crowd in that link.

In 2001-02, the Pistons changed back to their old colors, and were in the process of rebuilding through team icon Joe Dumars. Slowly but surely, the Pistons won the 2004 NBA championship, and were selling out every night. Over that time, team management hopped on every random source of sponsorship money available. The Pistons got a “presenting sponsor”. The Palace got another atrium, this time coming covered in corporate logos. Along with the shameless money grabs, the fanbase changed too. Things simply got too corporate, too contrived. Despite the team slogan of “goin’ to work”, the fanbase seemed to now consist entirely of families on a super cheap night out, and trend-hopping teenagers already dressed and ready to leave for some trendy club in Royal Oak or something. The actual game was treated as completely irrelevant in the orgy of corporate sponsorship.

(For one introductory college class on sports and culture, the class was taken across the state to a Pistons game, and given the assignment of counting the excessive number of sponsorships. Not only did it take the majority of the game, it also hindered me from another important task, that of finding out the score of that night’s Red Wings/Dallas game, which I cared far more about than what was going on within the building. Although I was unsuccessful in getting a Red Wings game on TV at the Palace, I was able to commemorate that cross-state sports journey by spending as many weekends possible, by almost whatever means necessary, to get home to my church and the Joe Louis Arena.

Also, the Red Wings won that game 2-1, on two third-period goals by Kris Draper and Mathieu Schneider, both of which came after I was able to listen in on the radio. The game was sold out.)

In the last couple years though, the Detroit Pistons have fallen off the map locally. The team suddenly wasn’t ‘hot’ any more, and all those trendy kids went away. The Pistons’ roster, devoid of national superstars but always winning, was symbolically gutted when team captain Chauncey Billups was traded for malcontent star Allen Iverson in November of 2008. The Pistons went straight into the toilet since, and have not recovered; just check out those attendance numbers above. The team owner, Bill Davidson, passed away, and his wife sold the team off as soon as she could. Now, the NBA is in a lockout, as so many teams are losing money.

Look, I’m sure that there are many reasons as to why the Pistons went downhill. There’s lots of blame to go around. But at the end of the day, the team went from the business of winning basketball to the business of shilling for a sponsor. Unfortunately, no sports fan is coming to games for the sponsorships, and when the core product of sport was lost track off, everything fell apart.

That’s why Tom Wilson’s quote above has to be troubling. If Amway is there to impact everything that the Red Wings do, the constant drumbeat for Amway can only distract from the pursuit of the Stanley Cup. When the outside marketing becomes the focus of the product instead of the actual thing, the product dies. It happened with the Pistons, from the “Teal Era” and Grant Hill, to the recent downfall with Allen Iverson. The cycle has come around twice for the Pistons, and we’ll see if it ever goes back up again.

Meanwhile, the Red Wings are the most consistent sports franchise of the last 20 years. The team doesn’t market on sizzle, it markets on the steak of winning hockey. And of that ever changes, that consistency goes away in a flash, never to completely return.

——

There’s some among us that think of sponsorship as ‘progress’. ‘It’s where we’re going after all!’, they say. ‘The Pistons do it. There’s sponsors on jerseys in soccer. What’s wrong with the Red Wings doing it?’

On the initial level, just because everyone is doing something idiotic, that doesn’t mean you have to.

But on a deeper level, even if you assume that this kind of thing is alright, there’s an additional level of scum with this one. The Red Wings are partnering with Amway, a company that is shady to say the least.

Amway is a direct-selling, multi-level marketer. What that means is Amway sells products through many levels of individuals, directly to each one. Instead of buying a product at a store, you have to buy Amway products through one of these distributors at the bottom level or so. There’s also levels of distributors, with one level supporting the weaker level below it, and so forth, stretching down from the top of the company.

In short, it’s a pyramid scheme.Here’s a Federal Trade Commission testimony on them, which does mention Amway in great detail. And according tosources, such a thing is borderline illegal and always immoral.

Product-wise, Amway distributors make very little money. On average, 98% of Amway products are sold only to other Amway members, and according to1991 article from Paul Klebniov of Forbes Magazine, every Amway member makes about $700 for every $1000 they spend on Amway products on top of whatever costs they accumulate while trying to push product. The great majority of the money goes to those only at the very top, about the top 2%. Everyone else either breaks even, or more commonly, loses money.

Now, where does the real money come from? According to Klebniov, the real money comes from low level members buying hundreds or thousands of dollars worth of motivational material, or going to motivational conferences around the country. Those are all very expensive, and promise the world – a mansion! a sports car! a yacht! – if you just work hard enough with Amway.

This is where the fundamental problem, ethically, comes into play. It’s not just that Amway is a company designed to fleece money via a pyramid scheme. It’s also that, after setting up a system designed to get people to lose, Amway has them spending more than ever before under the guise of business secrets but instead is simply convincing them that it’s not the system’s fault, it’s their own. From a very old website,on how harmful Amway can be to the psyche.

Amway, in short, is a scheme designed to get people thinking that they can make great money by just doing one simple thing, but when that thing doesn’t work out, it’s only their fault. They are the failures, and not the company that spat them out.

Here’s where the Red Wings are truly being irresponsible. Detroit is hurting right now. Everyone can see that. The Red Wings’ slight attendance hit in 2007-08, as mentioned above, was largely blamed on a struggling economy where so few have jobs. 24% of the workforce has left Michigan in the last decade, and the umployment rate went from 3.3% in March of 2000 to 14.1% in August of 2009.It’s now at 10.9%. There are lots of desperate, hurting people out there. And that demographic is absolutely perfect for Amway to chew up.

By putting Amway in such a prominent position on the Red Wings, the team is putting its own fanbase in harm’s way. And that is truly the most terrible thing of all.

——

This whole thing, in some part, is just marketing run amok.

The thing is, it wasn’t always this way for the Red Wings. Back in 1997, the Red Wings were looking to come up with some slogan that would encapsulate the excitement around the team and the city. Wings World? Too narrow. Hockey Heaven? Still no Stanley Cup. Hockeytown? Just right. It wasn’t just that the Red Wings were about to win Detroit’s first Cup in 42 years…it was the University of Michigan defending the NCAA title, it was the Detroit Vipers going for the IHL’s Turner Cup. It was lakes full of kids and adults playing hockey all winter, it was the newly built local arenas all around the city. Sure, the Red Wings were the center and the catalyst, but it wasn’t all at the Joe.

Hockeytown is us, fellow Red Wings fans. The Red Wings are us. Without the fans, there is no team. Without everyone supporting the team, the Red Wings go nowhere.

It goes without saying that I include myself in that count. If anyone has somehow been attached to the Red Wings, it’s me. I’m named after a Red Wing, for crying out loud. Yes, that Gordon is after the great Gordie Howe. When I was born, the birth announcement read “We are proud to announce the arrival of our little hockey player!” That announcement is signed by Gordie Howe (“Love the name, best wishes, Gordon Howe), and framed with a picture of a newborn me in the hospital crib, mini Red Wings stick in hand.

When it’s my birthday, my dad and I go to the Joe, for 23 years and counting (including the game for my 9th birthday LINK HERE). I’ve been to four Stanley Cup parades, too many games to mention, and spent even more time than that invested in this team. For that matter, I spent my night writing this up, when I assuredly had more pressing matters, because I love the Detroit Red Wings.

And I am considerably less interested in the Red Wings now than I was twelve hours ago.

What does that say for the rest of the Red Wings’ fanbase? If I feel disenchanted by this move, what about everyone else? Never in my life have I ever had a moral problem with the Detroit Red Wings, not until tonight. For me, that might mean less time going to games, and less energy invested in the team overall. For a more casual fan, the Red Wings might go from a passion to simply another thing to do. And for the extremely casual fan, well, how about those Lions? And those Tigers? When your fanbase is alienated, they don’t come back easily. And when they do, it’s never as intense as it was before.

Where is Mike Ilitch? Why was he not there for this terrible, terrible day in team history? How can a team sour itself in the eyes of so many, so quickly, without someone speaking up?

Do the right thing, Red Wings. Drop this ‘presenting sponsor’ business. You guys have no benefit whatsoever, in the long-term. All this does is drive away your loyal customers for a cheap buck, a dirty buck no less. Do the right thing. And deep down, somewhere in the hearts of someone at the Joe Louis Arena, you guys know what that right thing is.

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About the Author: Gordon is currently looking to enter the world of journalism, while spending his free time at either the University of Michigan or the Joe Louis Arena.

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  1. Grant says:

    Thanks for the article, though I’m not sure where you’re attendance information. Here in Calgary we are tied for 7th at 100% attendance, Chicago somehow packs in 108%+, and the Wings are at 18th (at 98.1% like you stated), but the percentages drop off quickly after that. Anyway I’m bookmarking this site, thanks again.

  2. Jeremy says:

    Your attendance figures are wrong.

    http://espn.go.com/nhl/attendance

  3. John says:

    I don’t care if the stats are correct. Gordon writes of what is right and wrong. Clearly, I feel slapped by the Illitch family. Living out of state, I used to brag to people about Mike going from selling pots and pans from his car trunk to owning the Red Wings because he was a sickened fan.

    I feel like Amway stole my team. And I care far less about the Winged Wheel. I removed my “Like” from Face Book within minutes of the Amway announcement appearing on my monitor.

  4. [...] an in-depth blog post over at Hockey Independent (It’s a long read, but worth your time), the entire framework of the contract is laid out [...]

  5. Doug Allan says:

    Good stuff, Gordon…like you, I’m not a fan of the Amyway empire…I may be wrong, however quite a few years ago, I believe the great Gordie Howe and his bride, Colleen, were ambabassadors for Amway – I recall seeing a picture of them promoting the company…I realize money was/is involved, but I struggled w/ Gordie the Great being involved w/ a dubious business.

    • Gordon says:

      Colleen did Amway, along a ton of other things, but she’s a natural saleswoman. It’s what she did her entire life, from everything with Gordie, to outside interests, to handling negotiations for her sons. If she wanted to start any business whatsoever, it would have probably been successful.

      Amway’s major problem though is the constant stream of motivational stuff going to people who don’t have a sales bone in their body, and get pulled into the program with pitches of “easy/big money!” instead of actually doing business. Once they are unsuccessful, all of the shady motivational stuff kicks in.

      Also, in something that will be explored later, a business model doesn’t work with millions of distributors. Eventually, there’s no market. Even McDonald’s can reach the breaking point for market penetration.

      • SamVan says:

        Amway’s success comes more froms consumption rather than from sales although they are considered a direct sales company. Do you have any experience with the company? I do. Although I did not think Amway was for me, I still admire them for the great motivational teaching that applies itself to all walks of life and encourages people no matter what they choose to do to do it well. I took that lesson and applies it to something else with great success! Thanks, Amway! Looks to me like one successful organization has another to support. By the way, wasn’t the owner once a direct marketer selling pots and pans like Amway does?

        • Gordon says:

          Selling products is one thing.

          Selling an unrealistic pipe dream via cultlike actions for the purpose of taking as much money as possible is another.

          • chris z says:

            your certainly misinformed…
            how is it a pipe dream to help someone meet their income goals?
            I helped a new guy get started while he was in college, he needed a few hundred dollars/month to keep up with expenses while in school and didn’t want to rack up credit card debt.

            I helped him market some products to people who needed them, they saved some $,
            he is making a little over $300/month now…

            meeting the goals he wanted to…

          • chris z says:

            4 the moderator…

            I hope that you have the integrity to include comments that disagree with yours.

  6. [...] Detroit Red Wings "bought" Here's an article I just read about this: link __________________ Twitter: @the_chicago_fan Tumblr: TheChicagoFan Email: [...]

  7. michael says:

    Get a grip dudes!!! Social Security is a pyramid scam and so is belonging to a union. Unions are broke (GM & Chrysler) and so is SS. Why? Because it is pyramid scam with no money left in them. Thus…following your logic you should give up on SS and Unions. Further…the Freddie / Fannie Govt scam was somewhat of pyramid scam because they forced bad loans on banks behind the power of Senators like Obama threating them with fines and lawyers. Thus the banks had to pass these known bad loans (also known by govt freddie & fannie to be bad) down the line. My ultimate point here is: get more involved with the govt taking your money on a daily basis than with Amway and or any other meaningless sport. You just might make a real difference some day if you do!

  8. DA says:

    michael, This is ridiculous behavior on your part. Spotting you your counterexamples of pyramid schemes (they don’t actually make much sense, especially Fannie and Freddie, which are thrown in solely to attach some more conservative buzzwords to your argument, but all that is another argument for another time), this line of thought does absolutely nothing whatsoever to defend Amway. If SS is a pyramid scheme, that’s bad, and if Amway is a pyramid scheme (it incontrovertibly is, even if it is set up in such a way as to evade laws against pyramid schemes), that is also bad. Social Security has not the slightest thing to do with the fact that the Red Wings are now officially sponsored by a pyramid scheme, and speaking as a Red Wings fan, I think this is a dark day.

    • Rick says:

      No, it does, he is merely trying to point out that it is damn near impossible to find any business/government/religious model that doesn’t adhere to the broad definition of pyramid scheme used by most people. Some people are able to find success with this one, some aren’t. There are plenty of institutions that have done far more damage to far more people than a network marketing company ever could (Banks, Oil, Alcohol, Pharmaceuticals). Yet nobody bats an eye when such companies enter into sponsorship of sports entities.

    • chris z says:

      Actually, by definition, it is not a “pyramid”
      That requires 2 things.

      1. That no actual products be sold.
      2. That the person “above” you always make more $ than you.

      Neither of these is true with the Amway biz model, I know because I did more work than my “sponsor” and I have earned far more $.

      Not to mention that people who get involved can get 100% refund for 6 months, common guys, please use some common sense instead of spouting whatever garbage someone else fed you.

      Nothing is 4 everyone, and I certainly don’t want to “talk you in”
      I just hate to see such inaccuracy and misrepresentation.

  9. Gordon says:

    Hey everyone, keep the comments coming. All will be addressed in a column tonight…along with Crain’s and Yahoo’s take, and along with some message board thoughts.

  10. Pinner says:

    Hi Gordon, great article, and a very interesting, in-depth take. You are bang on about Detroit being the perfect market for Amway to crush thousands of more souls in their scam due to the economic plight of the city currently – presumably they are aware of this, and hence have targeted the Red Wings as a wonderful way to increase brand recognition and schlep their poison.

    By the way, what is your source for attendance figures? Just wondering, as you’re kinda getting slammed in the comments – the various sources are all probably bunkum anyway, with the consecutive sell-out streaks at various arenas often largely supported by corporate absentee seat-holders.

    • Gordon says:

      The attendance figures come from ESPN’s website, and a James Mirtle article that I’m trying to get permission to extensively quote from.

      In short, the Red Wings have had the most consistent attendance numbers over the last 20 years, when all is averaged out.

  11. John says:

    This is just sick. Sponsors are annoying enough, but AMWAY attached to the RED WINGS LOGO? I hope to God that the Amway logo is plastered on all of the replica jerseys and tee shirts everyone buys. If thats the case, sales of those will plummet. Illitch made a huge mistake letting this happen. I bought opening game tickets yesterday and printed them off and realized Amway was on the damn ticket too! This may be the last Red Wings game I ever attend. RIP Red Wings. Like the author here, I loved you guys, the Joe was my church. I think October 7th this all comes to an abrupt end for me. Im not supporting Amway in any fashion. Goodbye!

  12. David says:

    (1) Amway’s not a pyramid scheme. They’ve been dealing with idiots who don’t know what they’re talking about claiming it is a pyramid scheme for more than 40 years. Every time it’s investigated, it’s cleared. Apparently that’s not enough for some people, so they go around quoting anonymous websites and two decade old magazine articles that haven’t miraculously started being right. It’s only a pyramid scheme if you decided to ignore what the term actually means and redefine it so it covers pretty much every retail business out there. Buy in volume and sell at a markup is kind of normal business practice. Good grief.

    (2) Amway has been a Red Wing’s sponsor for nearly a year already. Apparently the world didn’t end.

    (3) Amway and Nutrilite became a sponsor of the world’s most successful football team a couple of years ago. AC Milan’s world didn’t end either. They won the championship.

    • DA says:

      I had a response to this typed up but, got distracted when I realized that apparently clicking on your name leads to a website called “the truth about Amway”, and here you are obfuscating to defend them. This is endlessly hilarious to me. Please tell me you’re getting paid to shill thusly and haven’t taken up the cause of salvaging Amway’s internet reputation pro bono.

    • Mike says:

      Thanks, David for standing up to the morons who still think AMWAY is illegal! ANY company who makes over 1 Billion dollars in a MONTH absolutely cannot be illegal… especially a company that has been around for over 50 YEARS! *Get your facts straight, Gordon*

      So… there is only ONE WAY to get the MORONS to SHUT THE F*CK UP is to make the company EVEN BIGGER! Take that to the bank!

      As for the Red Wings teaming up with *ANY* company… get your head out of your A$$! This is the way of the future, and soon *EVERY* team will be associated with a big name company, whether “GORDON” likes them or not!

      • Gordon says:

        And people wonder why the country is going downhill quickly.

        In general, stand up for your rights, and stand on the truly correct side of them, before they are taken away.

        And remember, just because it makes money, that doesn’t mean it’s good.

  13. Pete says:

    I can see why the author is still trying to enter into the world journalism. A real journalist would do some fact checking first. Amway isn’t a scam or pyramid. FTC clearly states what is and what is not a pyramid, etc. Check their website. http://www.ftc.gov/speeches/other/dvimf16.shtm

    They even mention something about the Amway decision. #23 at the bottom.

    I do admit Amway doesn’t have a great reputation with some people but that is more from years ago than the present. And mostly comes from people like this author spouting nonsense.

    Are you also aware that one of the owners of Amway owns the Orlando Magic of the NBA? Seems they aren’t doing too shabby. Nor has the NBA suffered from it.

    • Gordon says:

      I don’t need to address much of the earlier stuff, as it’s already been mentioned over and over again how Amway isn’t the most ethical of companies by any standard. And how this stuff stretches to the present.

      But I do need to add this: the NBA does have presenting sponsors, and Tom Wilson immediately jumped on board. The NBA is bleeding money, and will not be playing any games until at least February. By any standard, the Magic and the NBA are doing poorly…because if they weren’t, there would be basketball in November.

      But there will not be. Because the NBA has been terrible, on and off the court for years. The NBA example is horrendous to follow.

      • Pete says:

        You are right that there likely won’t be an NBA season next year, but that won’t be because someone from Amway owns the Orlando Magic. I am pretty sure NBA’s problems are caused not by Amway’s association with the NBA but because like any other company that bleeds money, poor management. I would likely guess most GM’s in the various leagues (NBA, NHL, NFL, MLB) don’t really know how to run a normal business. Hence the problems many teams have financially.

        I suspect that the owner of the Redwings does know how to run things and as their club has proven for the last 20 or so years, they are considered the model franchise by many people.

        I guess when it comes down to it, I’ll take the owner of the Redwings saying this is a good business move over you saying this is a good business moves becuase well, let’s face it, he is a successful businessman and you, well, I will hazard a guess that you aren’t.

        • Gordon says:

          The owner of the Red Wings appears to have nothing to do with this transaction.

          The person responsible is a former NBA executive who routinely ran the Detroit Pistons into the ground, in the name of marketing.

          If the Red Wings’ owner said something, that would be one thing. But, as noted in the bottom of the article, Mike Ilitch has been very silent over the entire issue.

  14. Doug says:

    I can think of many worse sponsors. How about GM, Chrysler, Pick any of the Banking institutions that had to recieve a bail out. Gimmie a freaking break, the author must have been a low level Amyway distributor and is still having a bad taste in his mouth.

  15. Jerome says:

    Gordon, I can agree with everything you say.

    My only question would be: How will this arrangement affect the performance of Pavel Datysuk or Henrik Zetterberg on the ice?

    If these guys continue to perform, the fans will come, no matter what advertising banners are pasted all over the arena.

    • Gordon says:

      If the Red Wings’ stated goal is to have Amway impact “everything they do”, then that can only lead to eventually impacting the core business of winning hockey. Once the main focus gets shifted, the team’s focus on winning goes away.

      This already has happened with the Pistons, who spent many fallow years in the 1990′s and now again recently building teams on big names instead of big talents. The team has struggled since, and has gone straight downhill.

      Once Tom Wilson exerts more influence on the team, more will be put into advertising sponsors than onto keeping the current dynasty going.

  16. Mark says:

    This guy knows nothing about the changes and growth amaway has done in 30 years, last yr 9.2 billion, owns the orlando basketball team, sponsered miss america, helps childern all over the world, helps familys come together so they can take care of themselves,..must be some good pyrmid scheme. This guy still must be living in his parents basement and hasnt achieved a thing. Hey dude maybe you should take a look in the mirror and stop getting paid by some grocery companys to diss amway so that it doesnt take over the industry. Just saying.

  17. Mark says:

    Also if it was so bad like you think,…then how come Detriot Red Wing Owners, Lawers, and Accountants didnt catch it was a “pyrimid scheme”? Answer me this poor brain. Also I only listen to people who have acieved greatness in life. If i listened to you I wouldnt be out of dept at the end of this month. Man i could go on forever on how your wrong,..your job is a pyrimid scheme you cant get paid higher then you manager or your boss. Amway also sponsered Kurt Warner, they own the San Jose Earthquakes. What a good pyrimid scheme,i think you need to be in business for your self and you might catch the bigger picture.

  18. Carlo says:

    can’t believe no one has mentioned how offensive it is to have a company with such an overwhelmingly christian conservative ideology being partnered with our team.

    and i don’t mean regular-joe christian, i’m talking about De Vos and Van Andel giving billions & billions to hard-core christian cults all over the world. sickening.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amway#Religion

    • Gordon says:

      There’s lots of ways to go with the religious perspective of Amway. Considering that I went to a small, religious college…on the west side of Michigan…that is primarily funded from Amway…I have a lot to say on this topic.

      Unfortunately, that would be enough for an entirely separate column of primarily non-hockey tangents.

      And, as said below, if DeVos and Van Andel do anything with their money, I don’t really care, as long as it isn’t destroying the integrity of the Red Wings. Back off the Red Wings, and I can go back to what I was doing.

  19. Rick says:

    What the Christ? You mean to say there are people who are in business who try to make money off customers and that these people have now sponsored a sports team! Man the lifeboats, we are going down! Abandon ship! Abandon Ship!

  20. Patrick says:

    I think that jumping on a large company and talking all kinds of crap is a little too easy. I don’t really understand how you can say that Amway is this huge scamming, blood-thirsty corporation when they’re profitable year after year. Surely your opinion of them being a shady organization is nothing new but yet millions of people still FREELY associate with them. If they were in the habit of taking advantage of people, why would they still be able to find people to sell their products (13,000 employees) and especially people to buy them ($9 billion in revenue)? You seem to fundamentally misunderstand general business principles. Amway (like any other sales job) cannot guarantee profit. Some people are good at what they do and make money. Some people aren’t and they don’t. I don’t call that scam, I call that a free market. It’s not Amway’s fault any of their sales people fail anymore than it’s McDonald’s fault one of their franchises goes out of business. You knew the terms when you signed up and if you couldn’t make money doing it then you should find another line of work. A company like Amway can’t guarantee equal results…only equal opportunity.

    You’re whole critique of the business part of it is, quite frankly, a little ridiculous. You say things like it hurts the Red Wings brand and that the Wings don’t need it. You forget to look at the positives. The Detroit and Michigan economy aren’t exactly budding at the moment and from a business perspective, three years of a large amount of guaranteed money makes Olympia much less vulnerable to an economic downturn and makes the business much better off. Plus, more income from sponsors could mean lower (or at least a freeze on) ticket prices. If the organization is making more money on sponsorship, it makes them less dependent on ticket sales.

    Add to all that the fact that I’d rather put my trust in someone who is a self-made millionaire than a hockey-blogger who, from what I can tell, only responds to positive comments (prove me wrong).

    • Gordon says:

      Patrick, to address this point by point…

      Here’s how it becomes a cult/scam: the constant drumbeat of “motivational” things.

      If I, you, or anyone can’t sell anything, you take the loss and go on. That’s not our talent.

      But, if constant business losses mean that you get strung along to continue to fail, while shelling out even more money for expensive things that won’t help you anyway, that becomes predatory on account of the business. If Amway was basically selling no strings attached opportunities, that would be legit. The current backroom dealings, though, are not.

      (And by the way, if Amway decided to drop all the scummy stuff and go completely legit, say, with products on store shelves and another large business selling motivational business tapes? They’d have a very strong company that everyone would be proud of. It’s not about Big Company, but how they choose to operate.)

      —-

      The Detroit/Michigan economy is rapidly improving. The current governor, despite criticism, is doing his best to turn things around. The auto companies have been steadily improving every quarter. The mayor of Detroit has been attempting to fix a lot of problems and has done so, as Herculean of a task as that may be. Things are better than they were last year, better than they were three years ago, et cetera.

      The Red Wings are not getting a large amount of guaranteed money in this. The current ballpark figure is $800,000 per year. That’s basically paying for Justin Abdelkader. It’s not a franchise-saving amount of money by any stretch of the imagination.

      With that in mind, the Red Wings are losing a lot more than what they are receiving, if the current attitude of the fans stays the way it is. Lots of people are angry about this, and that means less money coming in. Adding onto that, it’s always harder to bring back a disgruntled customer than to attract new ones. By making this move, the Red Wings are losing a lot more money than they would be bringing in, which is a net negative in the short and long term.

      —-

      I do respond to comments that I think are constructive. Trolling comments, links to other sites promoting the article, et cetera don’t get a comment. Typically, they are automated robots or just, well, trolls. Also, not to be rude, but there’s some people that write in that, due to general spelling and grammar, probably aren’t coming in to seriously debate and discuss. So, I simply try to focus on the honest discussion points.

      • Patrick says:

        I appreciate the detailed response to what was a long post. I didn’t see the dollar value of the deal. That seems really low though for what it seems they’re getting. I was expecting it to be a much larger number. Admittedly, that’s not going to make much of a difference.

        I still don’t agree with your perspective and I don’t expect to change your mind but I can’t get my head around a willful and free association being predatory like you suggest. I don’t claim to be an expert on the Amway business model, but the way you explained in your response makes it sound like an advertisement. Meaning: something (“motivational things”) designed to persuade or influence decisions . I don’t think an advertisement telling me to “buy some new shoes” is a scam and I don’t think Amway trying to keep failing salespeople involved is a scam. They can choose to cut their losses. If they don’t, they shouldn’t blame the company, it was still ultimately their decision.

        • Gordon says:

          The thing is, from everything that I’ve looked up and heard firsthand from different people who have been sucked into Amway, it isn’t a ‘willful and free’ association. The business is adept at screwing with one’s mind and self-esteem, and sets people up to lose more than just money.

          If it were a regular company, that’s one thing. If it’s something beyond the usual advertising, it’s different.

          • chris z says:

            first off, Amway does next to nothing to “keep people in” except offer great bonuses as incentive to grow a business.

            if you invest say $100 to begin any business,
            and you make say $50/moth (=$600/year)
            is that good?

            what about my sister,
            her business brings in over 300/month, but last year landed account that paid her $2100.00 for 5 hours of work ( with 0 sales background)
            as a single mother, I’m proud to say i could help make that happen for her and her son!

            As far as “motivational tools ” go
            the tools are optional, and not needed if a person is looking to make only a few hundred dollars a month, but very valuable if you plan to build a long term stable business!

            since my biz pays me more than the cost of any tools i choose to buy, my biz is self sustaining and then some.

            I through my work, and helping others hit their goals, gave myself a 6,000.00+ pay raise last year, i’m not rich by any stretch, but i’m pretty glad I did the work!

          • chris z says:

            the other thing is that, our team’s goal with people is to help them succeed ( or we dont get any benefit btw)
            and help increase their self image.

            unfortunately many people who arent willing to actually do any work in the biz, tend to place the blame on anything and anyone other than themselves.

  21. Justin says:

    Gordon,

    I think I see the issue with the attendance. If you sort in the overall column by pct of capacity, it shows the Wings in 3rd, if you just sort the home column, it shows the Wings in 18th. (Btw, if you sort the road column, it shows the Wings in first, as they are the biggest “road draw” in the league).

    All that said, I think it’s one thing for Amway just to be one sponsor of many, but I get why this title presenting sponsorship is disconcerting. Every team is sponsored by companies that have probably bent the law at some point.

    Maybe by a legal definition Amway is not a “pyramid scheme” because there is a product involved. (Penn & Teller BS clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NNPxHd46yVg NSFW language), but their existence is based on recruiting people, selling them startup kits and hoping they consume as much product as they sell.

    I didn’t do Amway, but I did another multi-level company and looking back it is scary the level of indoctrination that took place. But the bottom line is once I ran out of contacts, I couldn’t continue in the business. And that usually happens before the big commissions reps are promised at the start, and that happened to most everyone.

    A few are going to succeed, but the overwhelming majority are going to wash out. It’s has mostly to do with luck, but they do tell the reps that they determine their success, and that they have only themselves to blame for their failures (if only they ponied up the $200 for the brainwash motivation convention).

  22. NedSparks says:

    Gordon,
    You hit a nerve here, as seen by all the Amway defenders jumping in to protect their poor, put-upon company.

    Even as a Chicago Blackhawks fan, I feel for you and share your grief, as this is bad for hockey in general. I hope you and other Red Wings fans are able to put a stop to this.

    P.S.- for the record, Social Security is not broke, nor is it a pyramid scheme. Geez. Those are silly, inaccurate talking points.

    • Gordon says:

      Ned,

      There are people paid by certain companies, or organized to just troll comments on news articles and blogs. (It’s why every newspaper comment section, regardless of article, has hateful attacks on President Obama.) I’m assuming those are paid employees.

      Not to politically profile, but it’s kind of easy to see which side some of those trolls are coming from. Especially given their talking points du jour.

      • chris z says:

        For the record, I am only paid by my effort. Sorry to disappoint.

        And SS is actually broke, and is ready to default.
        It began with 140/1 paying to payout ratio,
        Right now as of June I believe it is at 6/1

        And it is more like a ponzi scheme…
        Given that the gov. took the $ and used it elsewhere.

        Oh, and by the way, the “paid poster” thing goes for all sides in the political and news world I’m sure.

        No actually intelligent person would believe that the president is actually helping the economy with his policies.

  23. SamVan says:

    We need to give Gordon a break. He is a HOCKEY writer and not a business writer for crying out loud! This article is a consummate example of a hockey fan who has had one too many concussions in his amateur career trying to analyze a business deal! Get off his back!

    By the way, thank God and M$ for spellcheck! OOPS! I might have offended some by referring to God (or M$)without any cursing involved. Oh well…get over it. I, for one, will argue anyone’s freedom to have their choice of religion whether it is the Redwings or whatever! So how about a little break for us who will?

    • Gordon says:

      “by almost whatever means necessary, to get home to my church and the Joe Louis Arena.”

      Note the ‘and’ there. Church is Sunday mornings, the Wings are Saturday nights. Also, in an earlier column, I did mention how I preferred NBC’s later start times, so I can get home from church to watch the games.

      As a Christian, it’s always sad to see those angry when they feel they are being persecuted when there is so much actual persecution around the world. I have friends who are missionaries in Africa, who are missionaries in China. THEY are persecuted, not you. Quit whining.

      Angry comments like that are exactly what’s hurting American Christianity, as people lash out against fictional persecution instead of caring and loving those around them that really could use the grace they could potentially share.

      • Carlo says:

        American Christianity is destroying America. Those missionary friends you have in Africa are one of the main reasons other religious extremists want to attack us.

  24. Disgusted says:

    I don’t care what changes people are claiming that Amway has made. The Red Wings “presented” by anyone makes me a little sick to my stomach. A power play, or three stars presented by a company, fine. But the entire franchise? And by a company that thrives (still does, no matter what any Amway apologists claim) not on selling product to consumers but to their own employees… it’s disgusting and embarrassing.

    This may be in hopes of getting a new arena in a city hard up for cash, but then we’d go from the Red Wings playing in the old Olympia, and then Joe Louis Arena (Joe Louis, who is rightly long hailed as a hero and a man of deep integrity), to what, “Amway Arena?” It is truly disgusting.

    Is there anything Wings fans can do to put a stop to this? A petition, anything? Or is this just more evidence of how low we have to stoop to keep great franchises moving forward when cities like Detroit have a hard time still filling up the stands?

    • Gordon says:

      I don’t think this is for a new arena. If it was, there would be a lot more money involved. Frankly, I don’t think the Wings will move into a new arena. It looks like the Joe will simply be renovated many times over, as Cobo Hall is being redone now.

      What Red Wings fans can do is:

      - Forward this article around to friends and family, and continue to check in for more. Not much has really been said on this, because the team brought it out on a quiet time in the media to cover it up. (Late in the day, right before a long weekend.)

      - At Hockeyfest next week, let the team know how you feel, in a mature and thoughtful manner. Don’t be out of control, just state your opinion and ask questions when you can. Remember, this is primarily Tom Wilson’s fault, so only be hard on him and other execs. Don’t be rude, and don’t be rude to any of the players and coaches, as they probably don’t know much about this.

      - Don’t go to games, don’t participate in any Amway/Nutrilite promotions. Unlike the Red Wings on Facebook, let them know why. Unfollow the Red Wings on Twitter, let them know why. When the team calls around for ticket buyers, don’t buy anything, and let them know why.

      In all of this, be the bigger person: no shouting, no profanities, nothing below the belt. Us Red Wings fans are a classy bunch, despite the lowbrow enemy we now face. Keep it clean, keep it civil, and stand resolute.

      • chris z says:

        Amway has been around and legal for 50+ years, they are debt free, and employ a few thousand people at their many facilities.

        Some people CHOOSE to own a business through Amway’s model, it takes work and focus to succeed in a big way
        (kinda like the rest of business owners…)

        They and their partners have donated many millions, probably even billions of dollars to impact communities in the US, and countries around the world,
        if you have a problem with that, get out of my country!

        I love people who do what is right, because it is right, and not just to be popular.

        I pray that you get over yourself and man up.

        Amway is a great company, always has been.

        People can make mistakes, but few companies have the integrity to do the right thing for 1 year, let alone 50+

  25. SamVan says:

    By the way, Amway has some highly paid legal eagles on staff whose job it is to deal with libel. Get ready for them to own this sight as well the assets of those involved with the writing and publication of such obvious muck raking. You folks might wanna start seeking some legal help yourself.

    • Gordon says:

      The entire internet is covered with sites entirely designed to expose Amway. There’s sites that have been up since the dawn of the internet still up, including one I linked to earlier. If Amway wanted to complain about one hockey blogger and one small sponsorship in the big scheme of things, they must have very little to do.

      Besides, none of us would be talking about this if Amway didn’t intrude upon something we all find very important. If they kept to themselves and their conventional ways of doing business, none of us would be in an uproar about them. If they pulled this whole thing and apologized, I’d go back to writing about the Red Wings’ line combinations for 2011-12 like I was planning on.

      All they have to do is back out of this, and all the controversy would go away. Considering how all of this seems to be impromptu and half-baked (gradual rollout, they don’t really know what they’ll be doing), backing out would be a simple and easy option to take.

      • SamVan says:

        Conventional way of doing business? Something wrong with direct marketing? Seems the ‘wings owner got started that way… Think again, bucko. Someting wrong with having someone sell ya something like Avon does? Or Mary Kay? Or maybe even a ne on one sales meeting with an Amway distributor? Come on with this conventional business. Get something right.

  26. BDGallof says:

    Terrific work Gordon. Fact is Amway has baggage, whether you believe it is a scam or not and a hockey business is judged by the business it keeps.

  27. Dave says:

    Whoa, bro. Just read the article and comments, and while I respect the fact youve got some strong opinions on this matter, I don’t think you’re doing your case any good by presenting the way you are.
    As a fellow alumnus of a west Michigan college heavily supported by DeVos money, and as a resident of a city rebuilt much by the generosiy of that family, I think you’re a little over the line. If the biz was a pyramid scheme, you don’t think it’d be taken care of by now? The alternative gets into conspiracy territory. And if you’ve got a problem with the business model, that’s cool. But don’t doubt that the people at that company do a lot of good. And I would say one other thing: the Wingers are as beloved by Michiganders than those in Detroit. I, for one, am proud to see one ofthe state’s largest companies, one not headquartered in Det. partner with that franchise.

    So have whatever opinion you want. But tamp down the tone a bit.

    And to the fella above accusing the DeVos fam of supporting Xian cults: go read a book.

    • Carlo says:

      wow, get your head out of the sand and read a book yourself!

      • Dave says:

        All I’m saying is that your comment was highly ignorant. I’m not blaming you, and only recommending a remedy.

        This combox retort presented by:

        The Combox Literacy Council.

        Bringing encouragement to seeming anti-religionists since 2011.

        • Carlo says:

          it is absolutely not. you’re so skewed by our religion that you can’t see beyond it. seeming anti-relgionists is absolutely hilarious.

  28. Jon says:

    The Pistons have been “Presented by Rock Financial” and now “Presented by PNC” for years, yes, years…sorry this nut has already been cracked. It would be more annoying if other teams hadn’t already done it before.

    • Gordon says:

      The guy who did this to the Pistons, Tom Wilson, also did this to the Red Wings.

      Wilson was also the same guy who did a bunch of other terrible things to the Pistons, eroding their longtime and die-hard fanbase.

  29. [...] or Kellogs, but with…… Amway. Go ahead and laugh, I did, then I cried just a lil bit. http://hockeyindependent.com/blog/gordon/38121/ http://www.crainsdetroit.com/article…G13/110909995# ____________________________ "War [...]

  30. ivan says:

    Really you guys are lame. I mean come on do any of you have liVes. Spending your time writing on this lame blog. Bro your life must really suck that all you can complain about is this deal. LOL BUT HEY THIS MEANS YOUR GOING TO LOSE MONEY OR YOU BALL SACK FOR THAT MATTER. LOL DUDE PEOPLE ARE NOT INTERSTED IN THE DAMN SPONSORSHIP. THEY CARE ABOUT WHO IS GOING TO WIN THE GAME. HOCKEY IS STILL GOING TO BE THE SAME. GET A GRIP OF YOUR SELF. OKAYYYY MY GUY.

  31. Ali says:

    Wow. First off, I have to state that I am a Penguins fan. However. I’m a fan of the game of hockey first and foremost. Therefore, reading the article I just read, made me so frightened about the future of the game I love so much, that I was almost physically ill. It felt like a soccer ball had lodged itself in my stomach.

    I know all about Amway. I have an opinion on the company that is very well-informed and widely agreed upon. I do not wish to defend it in a public forum. I don’t need to. Nothing that will ever be said will ever change my mind. But whatever my feelings about the company are, don’t matter. The fact that a highly successful NHL team is resorting to being “presented by” an outside source, makes me sick to my stomach.

    I understand it in minor league hockey. There’s a minor league team ten minutes my house, and they need sponsorships to keep going, because they aren’t the NHL with damn near unlimited money at their disposal. However. They are, never were, and with any luck in the world, never will be, “presented by” anyone. A partnership like that leads to disaster. I’d like to think that people usually learn from their past mistakes (as the author pointed out with the Pistons) but in this case, apparently they’re not. And that just makes me sad.

    From one human to another: Red Wings Fans, you have my condolances. I would hope I have yours as well when my team decides to do something equally as stupid. Because if this “presented by” crap catches on, we’re all doomed.

  32. a pyramid scheme??/ you know nothing. The biggest pyramid scheme is corporate america…at least in amway I can make more than people who signed me up…but ill never make more than the boss i work for in corporate…thats why I own my business…you are a dumbshit for posting this and whinging. I made 3500 a month with amway at one time, till I went with another company…and i spent about 6 hours a week working it…get your facts straight

  33. seems to work well for the orlando magic playing in amway arena!

  34. The entire business plan teaches people how to shop better, and buy from themselves…All they go to do is master that and teach others the same…yeah big pyramid scheme…usa govt is the pnzi scheme from hell…and thats fact

  35. Gordon's Mom says:

    Your stepdads are right – I should have swallowed you.

  36. chris z says:

    For the record, I love teams with a winning tradition, like the Red Wings, as well as organizations that constantly seek to help people in their communities and around the world.

    But it offends me greatly to hear your narrow and misinformed view of the Amway Company.

    Amway has been in business for over 50 years, have provided an opportunity to own a business to anyone who wants to.
    Just like any other opportunity, it is NOT a grantee, it requires work, and focus, if it is treated like a hobbies, and it will pay like one.
    You certainly seem to have had a bad experience with an individual person, Amway has been adhering to law since it was founded, and setting the standard that the bbb, and FTC measure ALL other direct selling companies by.

    I am proud to be a part of Amway, I love the people i get to work with, the team i work with has been fun, supportive, and family centered.
    I refuse to apologize for my success, it has required dedication and work, and the only way to truly get ahead is to help other people meet their goals, so I for one an excited about the Red Wings partnership.

    Lets work together to impact fans, and communities for the better, like Amway has done for over 5 decades!

  37. Linda says:

    wow. you sure showed your ignorance writing all of this!! You don’t know the first really truthful thing about Amway. That is pretty obvious to all who read your dumb statements.
    I’m on the other side of the company having worked with them since 1985 and know just how wrong you are. Maybe someday you will too. Doubtful tho as you seem to be pretty closed minded! You’re the loser.

    • BDGallof says:

      Anyone from a company or their PR agency (to the thinly veiled PR stunt guy before your comment) who takes the time to search out any bad words or criticism on the web of any brand seems more about being a loser. Just a humble opinion from someone who has a clue.

      Cheers.

  38. Tyler says:

    I think you are vastly misinformed about the business. While I think it’s wrong to have a business so closely tied to all things regarding this hockey team, your evaluation of the business is greatly flawed. Red Wing’s legal team, Disney, Sony, and hundreds of other companies’ legal teams have gone over Amway front to back, to not only check credibility of the business itself, but to check if the claims the company makes are true, and they obviously passed the test.

    If anything, we should protest ANY business becomes that closely tied to a hockey team, but leave your opinion of a business you don’t know about at the door.