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gary bettman

I guess Team Canada won’t be defending its gold medal in Pyeongchang. The NHL won’t participate in the 2018 Winter Olympics.

For the first time since 1994, NHL players will not attend the Winter Olympics.

The league has released a statement saying it “considers the matter officially closed.”

The IOC confirmed to CBC Sports Monday that the NHL won’t be sending its players to Pyeongchang.

[ . . . ]

Connor McDavid said “100 per cent” that NHL players should go. The Edmonton Oilers captain, who wasn’t even born the last time NHL players didn’t attend in 1994, said he couldn’t envision the Olympics without the world’s top players.

“I just feel like we’re misrepresenting our sport on a pretty huge scale and a pretty huge level,” Jonathan Toews, a long-time ace for Team Canada, added. “A lot of the talk has been it’s the players pushing for it, and it’s the players that are interested and want to go. I think the players do want to go, but I think it should be of interest to the players and the league. I think the NHL should be in the Olympics.”

It’s no understatement that most Canadian Olympic fans care first and foremost about the hockey, to the point where we’d happily sacrifice medals in every other sport if it meant winning the men’s and women’s hockey gold. The players want to go. The fans want them to go. The owners don’t want to lose money from having a three-week break, which is all well and fine. But how much will they lose from fans tuning out in disgust?

This decision comes as a huge slap in the face to every hockey fan everywhere. This is a travesty.


NHL in Vegas?


Well, Gary Bettman has done it again: He just announced that Quebec City’s NHL expansion bid has been denied, but Las Vegas’s has been approved:

Bettman said the NHL board of governors unanimously accepted an expansion bid from Sin City on Wednesday, with the new team set to begin play in the 2017-18 season.

I have so many questions. Starting with:

1. Does anyone in Vegas other than the bookies actually know or care that hockey exists? Seriously, it’s a city in the desert which has zero hockey culture whatsoever. Who are they planning to sell tickets to, disgruntled tourists who lost big at slots?

2. How do you evenly divide 31 teams among 4 divisions? (Okay, not that 30 divided by 4 was much better, especially with 2 extra teams in the east. But still. 31 is an odd number that will create scheduling nightmares.)

3. What are the Vegas odds on the team being named the Las Vegas Nordiques?

4. How the hell is Gary Bettman still in charge of the NHL?


Hockey’s back, baby!


The lockout has dragged 113 days and I wasn’t holding out much hope for any kind of season, shortened or otherwise. But this morning, I woke up to fresh snow outside and a shiny new agreement-in-principle that could see the NHL returning as soon as next week: Depending on when a new CBA is reached, […]

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Still Canada’s game


Hockey’s coming back to the ‘Peg: The True North Sports and Entertainment group announced on Tuesday that they have completed a deal to purchase the Atlanta Thrashers and move them to Winnipeg in time for the 2011-12 season. And, right on target with the wish-I-could-punch-him asinine comment is Gary Bettman: “Hockey in Canada has never […]

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