Tuesday, April 4, 2017
I just hate the fact that the NHL professionals will not be representing their countries for the next Winter Olympics. I agree that the IOC have been getting the use of these professionals for the past five Winter Olympics without compensation to the NHL and the team owners. So as usual everything good in this world comes down to money that already rich people will be missing out on. The players would gladly give up their salaries for the opportunity to represent the land of their birth. For a country like Canada there is NOTHING that brings us all together more than the Olympic Hockey tournament especially if Canada is in contention for the Gold Medal as they have been most of the time. I understand that owners are worried that their star players may get injured playing so many games in so short a time but that isn't their real concern. Again, it's the lost revenue that they somehow can't make up every four years by just charging another two dollars extra for a beer or a hot dog or the very air people breath in the rinks.
I admit I am spoiled. I want to see the very BEST players in the world at the top sporting event in the world. Hopefully this edict will be reversed as the IOC realizes that they have to pony up some dough to keep their event the showcase that these corrupt officials have always tried to make it. Bettman is just being a businessman but that doesn't mean that he didn't also have to be a dickhead by making this move in the first place. As usual, instead of waiting in anticipation for a good Olympic Games, I wait for the fallout to another decision primarily made out of greed and there is lots of blame to go around for that. The world needs more things that bring us together and make us feel special. As usual, the fan is the afterthought in all this.
You can blame Gary Bettman for a lot of things, if you’re so inclined. The game of hockey has deteriorated under his watch; he lost a season to labour strife, and another half of one. The league has been small-minded on so many fronts, and there is not a lot of evident vision. Never has been, really.
To that, you can now add the Olympics. The National Hockey League finally ended negotiations on Monday, formally announcing that the league will not participate in the Olympics for the first time since 1994. The NHL apparently didn’t want to overshadow the playoffs, which start in a little more than a week, which is maybe enough time for the anger to die down.
Because this is a narrow-minded decision, fuelled by the owners and carried out by their commissioner. There is plenty of blame, of course. The International Olympic Committee paid the insurance and travel costs to Sochi, then withdrew that money for Pyeongchang, South Korea, leaving a gap of between $15 million and $20 million (U.S.). When the NHL tried to find a compromise, the IOC did not budge. The IOC started this. The IOC failed.
Posted by Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness at 7:16 PM