Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 01/08/14 at 05:40 PM ET
from Sharon Terlep of the Wall Street Journal,
Fans of Olympic hockey had better enjoy it while it lasts. Next month's Winter Games could be the last to include the sport's most-elite players.
In interviews, National Hockey League officials said they see the Olympics largely as an irksome interruption of the regular season, one that offers little upside for their business. They said they may prefer to see their players skip the event after the 2014 Sochi Games.
The 2018 Winter Olympics will be held in Pyeongchang, South Korea, which isn't likely to hold the same appeal for NHL players that Sochi does, or that the 2010 Vancouver Games did. In both of those cases, there were many NHL players from those host nations who were eager to participate.
"Our experience with the Olympics has been a mixed bag—it's not our tournament, we're not in control of it, it's at a time of the year that doesn't work in our regular-season schedule," NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said. "On the positive side, we recognize we're on a world-wide stage."
The International Olympic Committee couldn't be reached immediately for comment.
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