As if the stakes weren't already high enough for Friday's rematch between the U.S. and Canadian Olympic hockey teams in Sochi, this is certainly an ante-upper.
A Chicago-area electronic billboard debuted Thursday with a straight-forward, eye-catching wager pertaining to Friday's semifinal game: "LOSER KEEPS BIEBER."
Nothing is higher than the stakes of tomorrow’s game. pic.twitter.com/usqJ9EPTpg
— Command Sign (@CommandSign) February 20, 2014
An executive with Skokie-based Command Transportation, which owns the billboard, told DNAinfo Chicago's Justin Breen they "just have fun" with it, noting they've previously featured the Bulls' Joakim Noah spraying the Heat's LeBron James with a fire extinguisher. And they've previously featured Bieber as well.
The billboard, located just off the Edens Expressway, also features Blackhawks players Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews alongside the troubled teen pop star, whom more than a few people wouldn't mind seeing deported to his home country of Canada due to his skirmishes with the law and human decency.
Bieber has won few points with Blackhawks fans in the past. When he posed for a photo with the Stanley Cup in the Blackhawks' locker room last year, he not only touched the cup -- which is a no-no for anyone who didn't actually have a hand in winning it -- but also stood on the Hawks' logo, another big faux pas to fans of the team. Blackhawks fans were, understandably, very angry and almost immediately sought revenge.