News Worms
News Worms

National Hockey League says it won't participate in 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea

The NHL announced it would not be participating in the 2018 Olympics in South Korea Monday afternoon, prompting fans and some players, to express disappointment and frustration on Twitter. Even though the statement finished with the words, "officially closed", the rest of it read like a negotiating tactic. "Even if our NHL players don't end up participating, we have such a depth of field in hockey in Canada that we will put forth a very strong team to defend our gold medals".

"The IOC, which distributes 90% of its revenue for the development of sport in the world, obviously can not treat a national commercial league better than not-for-profit International Sports Federations which are developing sport globally".

The NHL closed the door on USA Hockey's next generation of stars - and the league's players from every other nation, for that matter - from playing on the global stage by abruptly announcing it wouldn't compete at the 2018 Winter Games in South Korea.

The NHL had allowed its players to participate in the past five Olympics dating to 1998.

"As a player, the level of hockey there (I know it's high in the playoffs, but.) when you're in a one-game-takes-all and you're on Canada playing the US, there's no better hockey you're going to be a part of", Keith told ESPN. "Instead, the International Olympic Committee has now expressed the position that the NHL's participation in Beijing in 2022 is conditioned on our participation in South Korea in 2018".

It's unclear if the National Hockey League would punish any players who do such a thing or what that punishment might be. Because the schedule for the 2017-18 season has not been released, nothing is official yet.

The move means defending champion Canada could be scrambling to find players from outside the National Hockey League ranks.

"This is the only league in the world that is asked to shut down for 2 1/2 weeks at a key time in their schedule to supply players for free to drive somebody else's business", he said.

For handing over a talent pool with contracts valued at $3.5 billion, the NHL was seeking something akin to IOC Top Sponsor status which would allow the league to market the Winter Games on its platforms. The league set up a poll asking fans if they were in favor of the NHL taking a break in February of 2018 so some of their players could compete in the Olympics. "I don't know the answer". Matt Duchene said Sidney Crosby's golden goal against the United States in the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver was one of his biggest moments as a hockey fan.

"Yeah, I didn't change my mind and I won't", Ovechkin told reporters Tuesday after morning skate at Air Canada Centre in Toronto. "So, I don't know, somebody (is) going to tell me they 'don't go, ' I don't care, I just go".

"The situation was the same before the Sochi Games in 2014", Ovechkin said.

"I'm shocked", a man named Alex said on Whyte Avenue. "I've been twice - it's the greatest event you'll ever go to in your life". "We thought they'd figure something out to get them there", forward Natalie Spooner said Tuesday. "It's kind of like making a bad trade, and they would do it and we're not going to do it".


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