NHL Players Will Participate in 2014 Winter Olympics

On Friday morning, the NHL, NHLPA and IIHF reached an agreement for its players to participate in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

With the men’s tournament beginning on February 12, the NHL break will begin after regular season games scheduled on February 8. The gold medal game is scheduled for Sunday, Feb. 23 at 6 AM CT. Click here for the full schedule for the Games. The NHL regular season will resume on Feb. 26.

According to the release, the groups for the Olympics will be as follows:

Group A Group B Group C
Russia Austria Czech Republic
Slovenia Canada Latvia
Slovakia Finland Switzerland
United States Norway Sweden

According to the IIHF, rosters of 22 skaters and three goalies must be submitted by Dec. 31, 2013.

USA Hockey will conduct their Men’s National Team Orientation Camp from Aug. 26-27 at the Kettler Capitals Iceplex (the Capitals’ practice facility). Approximately 40 are expected to be invited.

As part of the agreement, seven NHL referees and six NHL linesmen will be integrated into the IIHF on-ice crews.

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12 Responses to NHL Players Will Participate in 2014 Winter Olympics

  1. Tim G says:

    Not that I ever thought they would consider not playing in the Olympics… but im very glad to hear this.

    Im looking forward to discussing both Hawks on Olympic teams as well as both of the USA and Canadian Roster selections!

  2. Wow do Toews, Keith, and Seabrook look young with their gold medals. Goodness.

  3. Sr. Brad says:

    I was hoping this wouldn’t happen…

  4. Tails says:

    Tab, which Hawks players do you think will play in the Olympics? Could be an interesting article.

  5. Sr. Brad says:

    Now I fully understand Bowman’s desire for extreme depth this season, as you know for sure that at the very least, Toews, Kane, Hossa, Keith, Rozy, Hammer and even Handzus will be playing…also its possible that Bickell, Sharp, Kruger, Seabrook, Oduya and Habby all get asked. So it could have a huge effect on the Hswks. Mind you, we won a Cup in 2010.

  6. Mike says:

    Sending NBA players to the Olympics is just stupid, I hate it and would much rather see our college kids playing. I feel the same way about hockey.

    NHL and KHL should both think differently about participating in the Olympics. These are the two premier hockey leagues in the world. The teams they play for pay them a lot of money. These players owe their employers to be at their best at all times. Adding 15 games to an 82 game schedule is not good for the NHL, the teams or the players.

    IF you are going to use NHL players, I would restructure Olympic years to maybe 70 games. NHLPA would have to agree to pro rated wages for all players, not just Olyimpians in order for team owners to give up games.

    Olympics should go back to using amateurs.

  7. Peter says:

    This might be the last Olympics this happens. Major backlash by the Russian players could have resulted if NHL lets players play in the US and Canada in 2 of the past 3 years and not Russia. I agree this is a major risk for the owners and the players will probably be more tired after playing these extra games.

    To Brad’s point It certainly looks like Bowman was planning on this reality and has allowed for some depth. There is also some Cap Room at the deadline in case of injury or excessive wear and tear.

  8. Sr. Brad says:

    I agree completely Mike…Peter, its true, we have extra depth even at Rockford, because 50 or 60 games into their season there will be a number of players that could help us late in our season, like Danault, Clendening, McNeil and Garret Ross…plus, as you say, with the extra cap space, a deal or two can be made. I love how the Hawks are taking this great shot at repeating deadly serious.

  9. Pete says:

    The best players in the world should play in the olympics. That means NHL pro players. Its great to watch and it grows the sport of hockey. Kane should be the star of Team USA. I can’t wait.

  10. Mike says:

    Nothing that happens at this Olympics will come close to the excitement of The Miricle on Ice.

  11. Pete says:

    Probably not, but so what. Olympic hockey is exciting. People need to get behind their country on this. The best players playing in a tournament for their respective countries. So the NHL schedule is interrupted and there is an extra injury risk, so what. GO USA. Also Patrick Kane is the star of Team USA.

  12. Tim G says:

    Im kinda with Pete… Olympic hockey is Very Exciting. That GMG last time around was Hockey at its finest. USA v. Canada… It was amazing!

    While nothing will beat the Miracle… its hard to not watch.

    I do agree with Mike however, that the Olympic years should maybe be shortened down to 68/70 games.

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