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Release of NHL Schedule Pending, Awaiting Decision on Player Participation in Olympics

July 19th, 2013 at 8:20 AM
By Anthony Custode Jr

After a grueling labor dispute that left NHL fans with a shortened season many showed relief that there would be labor peace between the NHL and NHLPA for at least the next eight years.

Of course, labor peace sounds too good to be true.

'Men's Gold Medal: Canada vs. USA' photo (c) 2010, s.yume - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

The NHL is has yet to release its schedule for next season and plans to do so until an agreement is made regarding NHL players going to Sochi, Russia for the 2014 Winter Olympics. A deal must be finalized with the NHL, NHLPA, International Olympic Committee and International Ice Hockey Federation. NHL Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly says no deal has been finalized yet.

"There has been no final agreement on the terms of Olympic participation at this point," Daly told NHL.com. "And unless, or until, there is, the release of the 2013-14 regular-season schedule would be premature. Having said that, we hope that a final resolution on both matters can be achieved in the very near future."

Daly's comments are enough to make fans nervous as his statement sounds very similar to many statements he made during the lockout, which lasted far longer than anyone had hoped.

The truth is, Olympic hockey is a special brand of hockey, where, for a few weeks, players from across the NHL come together to play for their countries. The Olympics are about the best of each sport competing for the gold medal. If NHL players do not play, it would be a slap in the face to not only NHL fans, but to the entire world.

Tags: Buffalo, Buffalo Sabres, Hockey, NHL

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