Penguins react to National Hockey League skipping Olympics

Sittler said it's a loss for players, who may not get another chance to compete on this kind of global stage.

With both the 2018 and the 2022 Winter Games in Asia and the National Hockey League making efforts to tap into the region's lucrative market, the logic behind the decision was lost on Swedish goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, who plays for the New York Rangers.

The NHL's announcement that it would not participate in the 2018 Olympics was a newsworthy topic at another big global hockey tournament - the women's world championship.

"But most of all, disappointing for all the players that can't be part of the most special adventure in sports". That's even more sad to me.

The business of hockey sometimes gets in the way of the game and it's always the fans who take a beating.

The NHL has not ruled out participating in the 2022 Olympics in Beijing, though the IIHF and International Olympic Committee had indicated that could be conditional on the NHL going to South Korea.

The NHL said earlier in the day that it will finalize its 2017-2018 regular season schedule "without any break to accommodate the Olympic Winter Games".

Is there still a chance this is revisited and the league does OK a trip to South Korea? "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".

"It is a pity but it is not a surprise", ski federation president Gian Franco Kasper told The Associated Press.

Hockey Canada and USA Hockey get millions each year from the NHL, making it hard to imagine many North American players under contract in the league would be allowed on those rosters.

Beyond that, players have described the Olympic opportunity as one that, without question, would help the game grow globally. There was a 13-hour difference to Nagano in 1998, six to Turin in 2006 and nine to Sochi in 2014.

The NHL decision will impact nearly every major hockey-playing nation since the Swedish, Finnish, Russian, US and Canadian teams are nearly entirely comprised of NHL representatives. The NHL has been murky about what it actually needs to sway the minds of resisting owners, but many players seem to believe the NHL is bluffing and remained hopeful things could change. "I had the belief that something might happen and something might change and you get to go". "Everybody wants to go there". "So to me it makes sense to do it, to go there, let the players be part of something very unique, something we grew up dreaming about, but also an opportunity for the National Hockey League to showcase the game".

"The IOC policy can not be there to give more money, finances, to a commercially orientated owner of a club in a national league", Bach added, admitting that he had expected the NHL's decision.

"Alex Ovechkin and his family and the Capitals and I are in it together". The Olympic ideal of being an arena for the world's best amateurs has been corrupted for decades.

"It's disappointing", he said.

"That's what we've been working on; that's the reason there's a World Cup - trying to reach certain fan bases that maybe we haven't reached before or reached enough", he said.

  • Julie Sanders