NHL Players will not participate at the 2018 Winter Olympics

NHL Players will not participate at the 2018 Winter Olympics

In an announcement on Monday, players from the NHL won't be competing in the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

NHL shared the official statement via their website:

"We have previously made clear that while the overwhelming majority of our clubs are adamantly opposed to disrupting the 2017-18 NHL season for purposes of accommodating Olympic participation by some NHL players, we were open to hearing from any of the other parties who might have an interest in the issue (e.g., the IOC, the IIHF, the NHLPA, etc.) as to reasons the Board of Governors might be interested in re-evaluating their strongly held views on the subject," the NHL said in a statement.

"A number of months have now passed and no meaningful dialogue has materialized. Instead, the IOC has now expressed the position that the NHL's participation in Beijing in 2022 is conditioned on our participation in South Korea in 2018. And the NHLPA has now publicly confirmed that it has no interest or intention of engaging in any discussion that might make Olympic participation more attractive to the clubs. As a result, and in an effort to create clarity among conflicting reports and erroneous speculation, this will confirm our intention to proceed with finalizing our 2017-18 regular season schedule without any break to accommodate the Olympic Winter Games. We now consider the matter officially closed."

The NHL decided to fully participate when the International Olympic Committee said it would pay $14 million to cover players' insurance and travel costs at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. The IOC did not extend the same compensation for the 2018 Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) President René Fasel indicated that the federation had the money to cover these costs, however NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said there were concerns that the funds would come from resources used to grow the game at development level. He also added the Olympic participation has the potential to impact the NHL season in terms of a schedule pile-up and possible player injuries.

The full story can be accessed here.

Photo by s.yume © 2010