"While I don't know who is responsible for these occurrences, I tend to doubt that the organization itself was behind such product placement. More likely, it was a well-placed fan on the writing staff who deftly incorporated the blue and orange into the script."
I'm happy to report that I can now set the record straight.
Josh Bernstein, Vice President of Communications for the Islanders, has checked in to tell us that seeing the team's crest front and center in the entertainment industry is in fact due to the efforts of the Communications staff to increase the team's public profile.
You can read Josh's full comment here, but I will highlight some of what he had to say.
The Islanders have been working very hard to get the team's image out there any way they can. In addition to the recent TV appearances, Islanders jerseys will be seen in an upcoming movie called She's Out of My League, which stars Jay Baruchel (Knocked Up, Fanboys, Undeclared) and Lindsay Sloane (Bring It On, Sabrina, The Teenage Witch, The Accidental Husband).
This fall, the NBC show Life will feature a retro Islanders jersey in numerous scenes. Josh told me later that the placement will be a framed Mike Bossy jersey on a police officer's wall. It just so happens that I watched this show during its limited run this past season and I was already looking forward to its return before this news.
The product placement campaign will even find its way to the Dr. Phil show in the fall.
Brendan Witt was scheduled to film a role on MTV's Jackass this past spring, but that project has been pushed back to next season.
Thanks to Josh Bernstein for taking the time to clarify this story and turning my speculation blades up. The best franchises in sports have strong national (and often international) brand recognition. It's good to see the Islanders working to get their share of this market. Raising the team's profile through pop culture and entertainment venues is a great start.