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Olympic Debate


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I suppose we'll be hearing about this until some decision is made and even then....

Personally, I can't see why the league has such a problem with it. If i may be enlightened then please do but as far as I see it, there's no need to create such a fuss about an event that happens every four years. If it was every year, or even every to years, I could understand. But for something like that, I think the players participating does much more for the league than if they were to not participate. And I've heard that they might use this as a bargaining tool for the next CBA. Seriously?

Although, I’d be lying if I said I wouldn’t want to see what you happen should the NHL not participate and Mr. Ovechkin jumps ship.

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I understand both sides of the debate, but I think it comes down to what you feel is most important right.

Say in 2014 our Habs are sitting 4th or higher in the conference going into the Olympic break (if there is one). We have players like Plekanec, Subban, Eller and whoever else take off and go play. I have no issue with them playing for their country, thats fine and dandy. The issue is, if they get injured while playing in the Olympics and come back to the NHL and are out for 4-8weeks. Then what happens to our team? From an NHL point of view, I see it as protecting your investment. Imagine your playoff hopes being dashed because one or more of your players end up getting injured in the Olympics. I think that's the issue that many who are against players going to the Olympics have. We've seen it before, it's not something that doesn't happen. This is hockey, players get injured all the time, how would a fan feel if their teams player got injured playing for something other than the Cup?

Like I said, I understand that players play for their country out of pride etc. I just understand the "why not" side of the argument.

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All the rising hockey powers that be (Denmark, Switzerland, Germany) may never have been that good if not for Olympic motivation. Really, Olympic hockey is the one thing that fueled hockey globalization and, one day, Australia could be at least at the same level of hockey as, say, Denmark.

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I would like to see NHL players competing at the Olympics in Russia. The Olympics are great exposure for the sport of hockey and watching anyone other than the world's best players would be a huge letdown. Shorten the regular season, get rid of the All-star game. I, for one, really want to see the best NHL players in Russia competing for gold.

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I understand both sides of the debate, but I think it comes down to what you feel is most important right.

Say in 2014 our Habs are sitting 4th or higher in the conference going into the Olympic break (if there is one). We have players like Plekanec, Subban, Eller and whoever else take off and go play. I have no issue with them playing for their country, thats fine and dandy. The issue is, if they get injured while playing in the Olympics and come back to the NHL and are out for 4-8weeks. Then what happens to our team? From an NHL point of view, I see it as protecting your investment. Imagine your playoff hopes being dashed because one or more of your players end up getting injured in the Olympics. I think that's the issue that many who are against players going to the Olympics have. We've seen it before, it's not something that doesn't happen. This is hockey, players get injured all the time, how would a fan feel if their teams player got injured playing for something other than the Cup?

Like I said, I understand that players play for their country out of pride etc. I just understand the "why not" side of the argument.

From a Club perspective it's protecting an investment. I dont agree that it's the same thing from the League's perspective. There will still be 16 teams in the post season dance. You also have to invest in marketing your product, not only in insurance policies :)

I personally am of the opinion that if a major event such as the Olympics is held that presents the best in the world in a given sport, then the best athletes should be there and participate. The best hockey players in the world are in the NHL for the most part, either let them participate or remove hockey as an olympic sport if you cant get the best.

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From a Club perspective it's protecting an investment. I dont agree that it's the same thing from the League's perspective. There will still be 16 teams in the post season dance. You also have to invest in marketing your product, not only in insurance policies :)

I personally am of the opinion that if a major event such as the Olympics is held that presents the best in the world in a given sport, then the best athletes should be there and participate. The best hockey players in the world are in the NHL for the most part, either let them participate or remove hockey as an olympic sport if you cant get the best.

The one issue I have with the Olympics is that it is supposed to be a showcase of amatuer athletes. When we look at the summer Olympics, I have an issue with Nba players being allowed to participate because they're professional athletes. Soccer, in the summer Olympics, is generally an under-23 tournament. I'm all for hockey and basketball being in the Olympics if they take a proper approach to it. Is it fun to watch Canada win the gold medal in hockey? Hell yes!! Is it fair that we have all these Nhl players playing against countries that have amatuer hockey players playing, probably not. I'm not knocking the European and Asian leagues, but their programs aren't at the same level as ours are in North America, just yet. I think the IOC and IIHF need to take a stand like they did with soccer.

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Russia is probably among the least affected if the NHL decided to cease sending players to the Olympics. I mean, the KHL is drafting the Russian best players year in, year out. And some of the players in the Russian Olympic roster are with KHL teams (Radulov, among others).

Canada will be affected some but with all the Canadian players in European major-league hockey, Canada would still be able to ice something that would remotely give Canada an outside chance to defend its Olympic title. The U.S. may very well be thrown out of the Olympic picture unless the best NCAA players were to play with the very few American players in European major-league hockey. Because European major-league hockey will definitely at least let go of players.

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On the one hand, the Olympics were much more meaningful before professionals were allowed to compete. I would have no problem going back to using junior aged and collegiate players, especially since tournaments like the U-20 World Cup get no coverage down here in the States. On the other hand, it is awesome to see the best players in the world compete, and the Olympics have become the only tournament in which we see that. Because of that fact, I think it is in the NHL's best interest to risk injury to its stars every four years. The Olympics gave the NHL a big boost this year and showcasing great hockey is great for hockey leagues worldwide.

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Correct me if I'm wrong, but players playing in the Olympics are no more at risk of injury than they would in normal NHL games.

Yeah but getting an injury while playing for your nhl team is considered part of the game, something that can't be helped. Whereas, playing in the Olympics is a choice and doesn't have to happen.

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Yeah but getting an injury while playing for your nhl team is considered part of the game, something that can't be helped. Whereas, playing in the Olympics is a choice and doesn't have to happen.

Yes I remember the debate some posters had back in Feb.

I for one want to see Canada kick butt in the Olympics however I also believe the Olympics should be for amateurs not the pros.

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Yes I remember the debate some posters had back in Feb.

I for one want to see Canada kick butt in the Olympics however I also believe the Olympics should be for amateurs not the pros.

Yeap, I was having this discussion with my cousin a month ago. He was on the side that we should use our NHL players and I was against it because they're professional athletes making millions of dollars. I'd be ok with sending AHL players to the games, they're not NHL level (some might be, but there are always going to be stars). It would be nice to see our amateur hockey players get some shine for once. This way the hockey sched. doesn't look all crazy either.

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I think that Olympics should be for amateurs, having the Olympics as the Amateur event and the World Championships as Professional would be much better in my opinion

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I say no in all honesty the Onlympics were always and should still be about Ameture athletics.

I agree. The Olympics is not for professional athlete.

But I love the international hockey to see the best. Maybe the answer is to have some kind of international competition like the Canada cup.

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I agree. The Olympics is not for professional athlete.

But I love the international hockey to see the best. Maybe the answer is to have some kind of international competition like the Canada cup.

Or the Worlds moved to early September...

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Since when did the Olympics showcase amateur athletes? Haven't the pros always been competing?

Definitely not. The first official professionals were used in the 1992 Summer Games in Barcelona, with the headliners being the US Men's Basketball dream team. The first Olympics using NHL players were the 1998 Nagano Winter Games. One of the big rationales for allowing countries to send professional athletes was that the Soviet Union had been using unofficial professionals for years. The Soviet hockey team, for example, was amateur only in name. They played together year round and were provided room, board, food, travel, etc.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but players playing in the Olympics are no more at risk of injury than they would in normal NHL games.

Yes, but the owners are paying their players millions of dollars to compete in the NHL, not the Olympics. It's one thing to have a player get hurt in one of your team's games, but it's another to see him get hurt playing for somebody else.

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Haven't track and field athletes also been pros for all practical purposes, such as long distance runners?

Most of them compete on world cup circuits. They aren't really paid millions by a team to compete. If they do get paid big money, it is off of endorsments that come after some success. But, there is no professional Track and Field league where there are teams and free agency etc. They compete for money and medals, they aren't paid to compete.

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