It’s not set in stone yet. But when the Winter Olympics convene in Sochi, it looks like the NHL will be part of them.
Representatives from the various committees, including the IOC, NHL and NHLPA, met in Stockholm to discuss the upcoming Winter Games in 2014. And as of now, it’s looking like NHL players will participate in the games.
NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly, according to IIHF.com, said, “we are proceeding under the assumption that the NHL will participate in Sochi. We are still working on important issues with the IIHF and the IOC, and subject to our board of governors’ consideration and approval, it remains the objective that Sochi will be the fifth consecutive Olympics with NHL participation and where the NHL shuts down for the duration of the Olympic tournament.”
If the plan goes through, Daly told meeting participants that the NHL would play its final pre-Olympic games on Feb. 8, 2014, resuming the league schedule on Feb. 25 (two days after the gold medal game). Selected players would head to Sochi on Feb. 8 or 9 and begin Olympic practices on Feb. 11.
The Blackhawks have had several players participate in recent Olympic games. Jonathan Toews, Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook won gold medals as part of Team Canada in Vancouver in 2010. Patrick Kane won silver at those same games. Marian Hossa played for Slovakia, which lost to Finland in the bronze medal game.