After the news that the NHL will not send athletes to the 2018 Olympics in South Korea, many athletes handled the news in their own way.
Alex Ovechkin wrote a heartfelt statement criticizing the league for its decision while San Jose Sharks defenseman Marc-Édouard Vlasic got sassy in a tweet after the Olympics revealed the design of their medals.
NBC showed their displeasure in an even more public way. The television network has announced they will go dark with NHL coverage across all platforms between February 7th and 26th, the dates during the Olympic Games. During this time last season, NBC aired 20 games over that period.
The NBC network family broadcasts 100% of the Olympic Games. The network’s decision concerning the NHL is interpreted as a symbolic slap-in-the-face to the NHL Board for not allowing the participation of their star athletes.
The New York Post noted there was a gap in those dates in the pre-released NBC broadcast schedule, but assumed dates would be added after the Olympic announcement was made official.
The NBC Sports Group VP of Communications Chris McCloskey wrote in an email exchange to the New York Post that “as of now, there are no changes” to the schedule.
The NHL has stated they were not made aware that the original schedule was cast in stone. The agreement with the NHL allows games to be added at a later time.
But as of now, NBC is sticking to its guns and axing NHL coverage for 20 days.
Headline Photo: Anna Sergeeva
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