from Joe Smith of the Tampa Bay Times,
...it's still hard for Stamkos to hide the disappointment of what the game signals: that the NHL won't be participating in the 2018 Olympics in South Korea.
Stamkos hasn't competed for Canada in an Olympics and may never get that chance unless owners have a change of heart for 2022.
"It's a little bittersweet," Stamkos said. "If there's the Olympics, then the (All-Star Game) doesn't come to Tampa, so it's a double-edged sword. If it comes to the point where there's no Olympics, I couldn't think of a better place to host the game. We've proven the hockey market that we are, how great we are. I think it'd be a great time."...
Hedman and fellow Swede Anton Stralman experienced the joy of winning gold at the World Championship last month, but neither has played in the Olympics. Stralman said the league "crushed a dream," caring mostly about money.
"It's a few billionaires trying to make an extra buck," Stralman said.
...So I asked Vinik, what's your message to your players?
"I'm empathetic towards the players. I understand their points of view," he said. "But I also understand the point of view of the owners and commissioner that we are shutting down our season for three weeks. No other professional sports league does that. It's a strong belief of the owners that it doesn't make sense."