New billboard in Montreal fires up old feelings over Subban-Weber trade

There's a familiar face on a new billboard in downtown Montreal.

Marketing campaign for the Weber grill is the brainchild of a Quebec-based company

A new billboard of former Habs defenceman P.K. Subban is on display on the Ville-Marie Expressway. The ad takes a jab at the P.K. Subban trade in 2016 for current Habs captain Shea Weber. (Submitted by Weber-Stephen Canada)

There's a familiar face on a new billboard in downtown Montreal. It's that of Nashville Predators defenceman P.K. Subban, along with the eye-catching slogan "J'aime mon Weber," on display on the Ville-Marie Expressway.

It's all part of Weber Grills new Quebec marketing campaign.

Quebec-based media agency Gendron Communication was the brains behind it. The ad plays on the fact that Subban, a fan favourite in Montreal, was traded in 2016 by the Montreal Canadiens to the Nashville Predators for Shea Weber.

Even though that controversial trade immediately comes to mind when you see the ad, Patricia Larez, the vice-president of marketing for Weber Stephen Canada, insists it isn't about the trade.

"This is about Subban's love for Montreal and his love for grills. There is no controversy or no bad blood."

Weber, who was named captain of the Canadiens at the start of the 2018-2019 NHL, could have been seen as a natural fit for this Quebec-based campaign. Larez explained on CBC Montreal's Daybreak why they decided to go with Subban.

"The association between Weber Grills and Shea Weber is pretty evident but we wanted to go farther than that. When you think of the name Weber, you also think of the name P.K. Subban as well."

The billboard in Montreal went up Thursday morning, and some Habs fans were quick to react, pointing out they think the ad is obviously about the trade.

So far, Subban has not commented on this new campaign. His team, the Nashville Predators, is currently participating in the first round of the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs against the Dallas Stars.


Jessica Rusnak is a sports journalist for CBC Daybreak.


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